Cape Town is buzzing with excitement as Street Fighter 6, the latest installment of the beloved fighting game franchise, garners attention from both new and seasoned players worldwide. With the upcoming Red Bull Kumite invitational, which showcases top talent in the fighting game community, set to take place in South Africa, the country’s very own four-time Red Bull: Hit the Streets Champion, Jabhim Mabuza, is ready to represent his nation on the global stage.

Who is Jabhim?

Jabhim, whose real name is Jabhi Mabuza, hails from Alexandria, Johannesburg. His gaming journey began in the vibrant arcade scene of his township during the 1990s. At the tender age of 6, while visiting the local arcade with his father, Jabhim discovered the Street Fighter 2 cabinet, which ignited his passion for the game. As years passed, he explored other fighting games like Tekken 2, King of Fighters 97, and the Street Fighter Alpha series.

Rising through the Ranks

Through dedication and skill, Jabhim established himself as a prominent player within the local fighting game community. While he dabbled in various titles such as King of Fighters and Tekken, Jabhim ultimately chose to specialize in Street Fighter. When Street Fighter 5 introduced an eSports scene, Jabhim recognized the opportunity and immersed himself in competitive play. His hard work paid off when he emerged victorious in the annual Red Bull: Hit the Streets tournament in 2019, catching the attention of Goliath Gaming, one of South Africa’s leading eSports organizations. They offered him a contract, propelling his career to new heights.

Balancing Family, Work, and Gaming

Despite his success in eSports, Jabhim remains grounded and ensures a healthy balance between his personal life and gaming commitments. Managing his time effectively is crucial, and he acknowledges the support of his wife, who understands his dedication to practicing and competing. As a family man, Jabhim maximizes the limited time he has for gaming, striving for maximum efficiency.

Street Fighter 6

A Revitalized Community Jabhim believes that the release of Street Fighter 6 has breathed new life into the fighting game community. While Street Fighter 5 may have alienated some players, the reception for the latest installment has been overwhelmingly positive. Many veterans have returned to the scene, injecting a healthy dose of competition. Jabhim expresses hope for the continued growth of the community and sees the hosting of Red Bull Kumite in South Africa as an unprecedented opportunity. Having represented South Africa at the Capcom Cup, Jabhim understands the importance of international exposure and believes the tournament will serve as a valuable learning experience for local players.

A Chance for Growth

Jabhim emphasizes the significance of Red Bull Kumite, as it provides a platform for South African players to compete against top Street Fighter talent from around the world. While high-level international experience is rare for South African players, the availability of Street Fighter 6 may level the playing field, giving local competitors a chance to shine. Jabhim acknowledges the skill of his fellow players and encourages them to persevere, even in the face of defeat. Growth comes from learning and accepting losses, shedding the ego that may hinder progress. By sticking through the tough times and remaining dedicated, players can surprise themselves with their own improvement.