Alain Ngalani Opens Up On His Recent Viral Video
With the number of COVID-19 cases still rising around the world, ONE Championship MMA heavyweight Alain Ngalani has taken it upon himself to remind everyone of social distancing and the importance of wearing of masks in public, in an Instagram post that garnered a lot of attention.
Ngalani resides in Hong Kong, which is currently experiencing a third wave of the coronavirus. While on a public train recently, ‘The Panther’ performed his signature splits to prevent a fellow passenger, who was not wearing a mask, from sitting beside him.
Speaking with South China Morning Post, Ngalani said he has had enough of the coronavirus and the restrictions it has caused.
“I’ve had enough of not working, of not competing and not travelling. I hope we can get this over with.”
After posting the video to his social media, the clip went viral, racking up millions of views. In part, due to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo sharing the video. The Cameroonian said he did not expect for his post to receive all the attention that it has.
“It’s crazy. I wasn’t expecting it. I just posted it on my [Instagram], in the next hour or two my IG couldn’t stop blowing up, my phone couldn’t stop blowing up. It’s amazing,” Ngalani said.
“At first it’s something I thought about doing when I was on the MTR, and I had an opportunity because someone came and was not wearing a mask. I thought, ‘How can I do that but not in a scary way?’ Something that’s me, but something that’s funny. Normally I can do that. I could do a splits on the chair to block someone from sitting close to me if he’s not wearing a mask. I thought, ‘OK, I perform the scene without scaring everyone’.”
While the video clip has been enjoyed by millions around the world, Ngalani hopes it also sends a message of the importance of wearing a mask when in public.
“We’re going in Hong Kong through the third phase,” Ngalani stated. “I think just like me, a lot of people have had enough of this coronavirus. We have to do our part to be sensible and to be cautious. One of the first things to do is to wear a mask to protect ourselves and people around us, so I’m doing my part sending that message. Right now, time is crucial. Safety is important. So I’m just reminding people to be aware of their surroundings.”
ONE Championship returned this weekend with ONE: No Surrender, and Ngalani says he can’t wait to return to the ONE Circle.
“Already just thinking about it, seeing the advertisements about the event, I feel very emotional, because I want to be in the ring, then I see some of my colleagues will be stepping in. We are all used to doing that, that’s what we do. Everyone wants to get back. I understand Chatri [Sityodtong, CEO of ONE] and his team have their plate full trying to decide who’s going to step in first or not.
“I’ve been training in the way I can, getting ready mentally for a good comeback, and to close the year with a fight with Vitor Belfort,” Ngalani said. “And now we are on the lockdown again. I really hope that we’re gonna fight sometime this year but things are very difficult. I don’t know any more. One has to be hopeful that we’re gonna see the end of this. So I stay positive. But even if I have to wait until next year, I’m waiting and I’m keen. This Vitor Belfort fight has to happen.”
The 45 year old Ngalani was originally set to face the former UFC champion, Belfort, in April, before the coronavirus pandemic forced the promotion to postpone all of their events since ONE: King Of The Jungle in February.