Adel “Big Bird” Anouche emerged as the victorious champion at Red Bull Kumite over the past weekend, defeating Chris “Akainu” Onema in a dominating 5-1 Final. Big Bird’s impressive performance solidifies his status as one of the top Street Fighter 6 players in the world. The star-studded tournament took place at the University of Pretoria, South Africa, showcasing the exceptional talent of Algerian-born Big Bird, who claimed first place.
A slew of international guests, commentators and online creatives attended the event ranged between the likes of Kayane, RobTeeVee, F_Word_FGC, zDamascus, Zhieeep, WSOLogan and also local talents such as TechGirl, Mrchocolatezzz, Pregz and many others.
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The electrifying event captivated fans worldwide as top players from across the globe gathered in South Africa to compete for the coveted title of the world’s best Street Fighter 6 player. Day one featured a thrilling 128-person Last Chance Qualifier, with players from around the world vying for a single spot in the main event. The final match saw Japanese powerhouse Kakeru defeating Britain’s Ending Walker 3-0 in the high-pressure LCQ Grand Final.
Surprise picks that battled on the Last Chance Qualifiers included the likes of krwking101,vinpetrolium and community favourite Sekwele. On Sunday, the elite Street Fighter players took to the cage. The tournament was a blind pick, with players unaware of who the opponents would be until the matches began.
In the tournament, the local hero, JabhiM, achieved a thrilling 5-4 victory over Street Fighter legend Tokido, creating history for himself and his country. Big Bird’s mastery of Marisa proved overwhelming throughout, leading to a resounding 5-1 victory in the intense final matchup. As the first-ever African Red Bull Kumite Champion, Big Bird proudly represents his Algerian heritage and expresses his disbelief and joy at the remarkable achievement.
Reflecting on his outstanding performance, Big Bird expressed his disbelief and joy, stating:
“I still can’t believe it. It feels surreal and amazing. It feels so good to win the tournament here, in my continent. I’m very happy to be the first-ever African Champion of Red Bull Kumite.”
For an event of such a huge magnitude in the eyes of legacy and competitive Street Fighter players, I believe the experience will bring a resounding change to audiences globally being exposed to the local FGC community that not only grew over the years but one that can produce players that can stand toe-to-toe with international competitors on a public setting.
For a game that is only three weeks old, the collective community can only unite to see the energy of talent, players and esports athletes expand. To top it off, this year’s Red Bull Kumite witnessed its largest viewership yet, with over 160,000 concurrent viewers at its peak.
Street Fighter 6 is currently available on PS4, PS5, Xbox Series X/S and PC. Watch the full finals of the Red Bull Kumite below:
Written by Smilo “Slim” Gosa