With more than 20 years of experience in various martial arts like the Full-contact and Kickboxing, Naoufal Benazouz or the Ã¢â‚¬Å“Iron LegÃ¢â‚¬? as he is always nicknamed, has a history full of winnings and participations in different international and national fighting occasions. His first contact with martial arts was in a very early age. His father also helped him develop his interest in sport. Naoufal Benazouz is one of the most respected figures in fighting sports.
The Ã¢â‚¬Å“Iron LegÃ¢â‚¬? was born in Al-hoceima, Morocco in 1979. He studied there and got his Baccalaureate degree in Economics, and then he moved to Tangier to resume his university studies. He grew up and lived there. His interest in sport began in 1988 in Achbal Rif club of Full-contact and Kickboxing in Al-hoceima. He is still practicing this sport till today.
His first national participation was in Rabat, Morocco in 1992, where he won the copper medallion and came out in the third place. His weight was less than 50 kg then. This was his starting point for other national and international participations. His first title in Moroccan championship was in 1996 in complex Ibnu Yassin where his weight didn t exceed 71 kg, and then other titles came out during the years 1997-1998-1999.
Naoufal s first participation outside Morocco was in Bangkok, Thailand where he finished fourth (weight 86 kg) under the lead of his father Mohamed Benazouz who was then the Moroccan full-contact national team s coach. After that, and in the same year, came his second participation which was in the ninth edition of the Arabic sport games, which were held in Oman, Jordan, and where he won the golden medallion and was titled as a champion of “Arabs” in Full-contact
In 2000, the Ã¢â‚¬Å“Iron LegÃ¢â‚¬? participated in the international championships of Kickboxing in Czech Republic where he got the golden medallion deserving the title of world championship in the weight 91 kg, and this was his last participation with the Moroccan national team and in Moroccan championships. He continued in his sport in France, Italy and the Netherlands in which he finally settled.
In 2001, Naoufal participated in the international full-contact championship (weight 91 kg) in France and won the title of world championship. He was truly fond of this game since his early childhood that it was his favorite hobby. He never thought he would reach this success. He used to watch international championships on TV and on Video tapes and thought that it was impossible that he would reach that stage. But the faith and the strong persistence of his father was one of the most influential reasons after Naoufal s success. He suddenly realized that he was surrounded by some famous and prominent figures like Bonjasky, Peter Aerts, and LobannerÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
In 2005, our Rifian hero participated in Bercy tournament in France (K-1). He was second. He also participated in a tournament in Amsterdam and finished second too.
List of championships and tournaments:
- K-1 world grand prix 2006 in Amsterdam finalist.
- K-1 world grand prix 2005 in Paris, Bercy finalist.
- Champion of Europe Wako pro de Saint Raphael. Full-contact. Franc 2002.
- K-1 world grand prix Milan, Italy, (a.k.a) K-1 Octagon, 2001
- Golden Medallion in Arab sport games in Oman, Jordan. 15/08/1999. Full-contact.
- World championship in Thai boxing. Bangkok, Thailand. 04/03/1999.
- 4 times champion of Kickboxing, Thai boxing and Full-contact in Morocco. 1996-1997-1998-1999.
Some photos of the “Iron Leg”:
A combat of the “Iron leg”
This was a fast one. Iron Leg, not surprisingly, used his legs. Karacs stepped forward with the straight punches early in and both men had their moments here, but Iron Leg picked his spot better, planting a right high kick to the side of Karacs’ head for a decisive down and a KO win.
written By Hicham Boughaba
Pictures & Information gathered by Miloud Ayadi
Pictures & Information provided by Adnane Benazzouz ( brother of Naoufal Benazzouz) & Hakim ( Sorif Band)
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