We are thrilled to share the extraordinary journey of Adel “Big Bird” Anouche, who fearlessly rose above all challengers to claim the crown at the prestigious Red Bull Kumite 2023 in Pretoria, South Africa. With a display of unmatched skill and unwavering determination, Big Bird emerged as the triumphant champion of the first Global Invitational Street Fighter 6 tournament, leaving a trail of vanquished opponents in his wake. He created history becoming the First Red Bull Athlete to win a RED Bull Kumite event and the first player from the MENA region to win a Kumite event in its 9 year history.
Red Bull Kumite isn’t just any tournament—it’s an elite invitational event that embraces the heart and soul of the fighting game community (FGC). It is a stage where the world’s greatest players gather to showcase their talents, a battlefield where legends are made, and a true test of character for competitors.
Since its inception in 2015, Red Bull Kumite has evolved into a revered and exhilarating spectacle within the fighting game scene. With production values rivaling television broadcasts, an ambiance that ignites passion and drama, and an unparalleled setting, it has become a beacon of excitement and anticipation.
Big Bird’s journey with Red Bull Kumite began in 2016, when he burst onto the scene as an audacious 18-year-old prodigy. Even then, his extraordinary skills and talent were evident as he navigated the grueling Last Chance Qualifier—a 256-man battle of endurance and determination. Against all odds, Big Bird surpassed expectations, defying established norms and finishing a remarkable fifth in the tournament. He swiftly became the heralded rising star, representing not just the European scene but a new era of dominance hailing from the United Arab Emirates.
Fast forward seven years, and Big Bird returned to Red Bull Kumite as an invited pro and one of the favourites to claim the throne. His status as one of the world’s foremost Street Fighter V players had already been etched in the annals of glory, with multiple Global tournament wins and prestigious accolades adorning his legacy. From the Capcom Pro Tour SEA Major 2018 triumph to an awe-inspiring second-place finish at the Evolution Championship Series 2019, and the triumphant victories at the European Capcom Pro Tour 2019 Open Tournament and Regional Finals held at EGX 2019—his prowess was undeniable.
July 2, 2023, marked the commencement of his grand odyssey in the Main Event, where he faced off against his fellow NASR player and teammate, Amjad “Angry Bird” Alshalabi another favourite to win the tournament. It was an epic clash, showcasing the sublime skills and adaptability that Street Fighter 6 demands. Armed with Marisa, Big Bird engaged in a symphony of strategy against Angry Bird’s formidable Ken. In a fiercely contested match that pushed their limits, Big Bird emerged triumphant with a resolute 5-4 score, propelling him into the quarterfinals.
The quarterfinals witnessed Big Bird locking horns with Zhen, a rising star from China renowned for his unmatched JP play. JP, the newest addition to Street Fighter 6, possessed an enigmatic ability to fluidly switch between offensive and defensive stances. Yet, Big Bird fearlessly embraced the challenge, countering Zhen’s multifaceted style with his own masterful command of Marisa. In a performance that left spectators spellbound, Big Bird secured a commanding 5-1 victory, ascending to the semi-finals.
There, he faced off against Kakeru, a promising Japanese newcomer who had secured his place in the tournament through a grueling triumph in the South Africa Last Chance Qualifier. Kakeru, too, embraced the power of JP, seeking to unleash its dynamic stances and combos against Big Bird’s unyielding spirit. However, Big Bird’s blinding speed and aggressive playstyle overwhelmed Kakeru, who stood no chance against the relentless onslaught of Marisa’s bewildering mix-ups and devastating combos. The scoreboard told the tale—Big Bird soared with another commanding 5-1 victory, securing his rightful place in the grand finals.
The grand finals awaited, and Big Bird faced Akainu, a French powerhouse who had carved a path of destruction, eliminating revered players such as Tokido, Oil King, and Leffen. Akainu’s choice of Guile, a defensive maestro known for his sonic booms and flash kicks, posed a formidable challenge. However, Big Bird, ever the unstoppable force, approached the finals with unwavering confidence. With an astonishing blend of aggression and patience, he overcame Akainu with ease, capturing the grand finals with a resounding 5-1 score.
Big Bird’s triumph is not merely a conquest of the Red Bull Kumite 2023 championship, but a testament to his ability to conquer the legends of Street Fighter. Among the tournament’s 16 participants stood four EVO US winners (Tokido, Problem X, Bonchan, and Leffen), one EVO Japan winner (Oil King), three Street Fighter League winners (Mister Crimson, iDom, and Gachikun), and two Capcom Cup winners (iDom and Gachikun). In this crucible of legends, Big Bird proved himself the undisputed champion, leaving no doubt about his status as the world’s greatest Street Fighter 6 player.
We extend our heartfelt congratulations to Big Bird for his awe-inspiring journey and the tremendous honor of becoming the Red Bull Kumite 2023 champion. His victory not only exemplifies his extraordinary talent but also serves as a beacon of inspiration for the entire esports community. As we bask in this moment of glory, we humbly acknowledge the support of our fans, sponsors, and partners who have stood with us throughout this incredible journey.
Join us in celebrating this monumental triumph and embrace the relentless pursuit of excellence that defines NASR ESPORTS. With our sights set on the future, we will continue to redefine the boundaries of greatness, leaving an indelible mark on the world of esports.