On Saturday, Singaporean bodybuilder Pardip Subramnian died after a celebrity Muay Thai exhibition fight against former Singapore Idol star Steven Lim.
It was the inaugural night of the Asian Fighting Championship (AFC) and Subramnian’s first Thai boxing fight.
The bout was over after just five minutes, as the referee noticed that Pradip’s nose was intensely bleeding. It was a technical KO, and Steven Lim was declared the winner of the fight.
After the bout, the 32-year-old bodybuilder looked shaken and had to be helped out of the ring.
“In the first round, it seemed like Pradip was winning. But in the second round, Steven punched him a few times,” said a staff member. “Initially I thought it was just a concussion; plus there was no sign of a heart attack. He was then sent to the hospital via the ambulance. It was later that I heard the news that he died.”
According to a preliminary medical report, about an hour after the event, he died of a cardiac arrest respiratory failure.
A tragic fight that should never have been authorized
Pradip Subramanian, who was also the president of the World Bodybuilding and Physique Sports Federation (WBPF), wasn’t initially intended for this fight. He was the replacement of Sylvester Sim, a former Singapore Idol runner up.
According to reports, Sim pulled out a day before the event due to insurance inconsistencies.
A close friend of Pradip, told that a medical team certified his health before the match.
Scott O’Farrell, owner of Ringstar Management, the company that arranged the fight, said that their events engage a fully-trained medical staff.
However, Dr. Cormac O’Muircheartaigh, who is the medical consultant of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) in Asia, said that completing the medical tests within 24 hours is unlikely.
“It’s not advisable for a novice to sign up for a fight the day prior to the event. This is based on the risks involved in the sport and the preparation required to minimize the associated risks,” said Dr. Muircheartaigh. “Both the individual and the organization have responsibilities in this regard.”
Rest in peace Pradip
Subramanian died at the Singapore General Hospital at 13:00 GMT on Saturday.
His contestant, Steven Lim, posted the following message on his Facebook account: “Rest in Peace, my really truly respected fearless warrior and fighter and awesome boxing instructor, Pradip Subramanian!!! This is a very sad moment for me to learn about the shocking news! U taught us all the virtues of being fearless and strong and the importance of keeping an active and fit lifestyle. ! My deepest condolences to you…you are truly our hero.”
Sasidharan Unnithan, one of the founders of the AFC and a close friend of Pradip also lamented the event.
“It was supposed to be a celebrity bout, not something that was going to hurt them ... I’m grieving, I lost a friend too.”