Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with mixed martial arts fighters in the Knesset on Tuesday ahead of their fights this week in Tel Aviv.
“I need some of these gloves,” Netanyahu said as he tried some of the fighters’ gear. “I’m constantly punching without them.”
Netanyahu told the fighters that he had studied taekwondo before sparring with Israeli contender Noad Lahat.
Lahat was joined by fellow Israeli fighter Haim Gozali, as well as Russia’s Fedor Emelianenko and Brazil’s Royce Gracie.
Thursday’s event, the Bellator 188, is the second major MMA event to take place in Israel, and features two prominent Israeli fighters at the top of the card, with Lahat headlining and Gozali competing in the secondary event.
Lahat is scheduled to take on Jeremiah Lambiano on Thursday evening at the Menora Mivtachim Arena in Tel Aviv. The fight will air a day later in the US on the Spike TV channel.