Lights, Camera, Action!


MMA Crossfire’s 2021 Inspirational Fighter of the Year: The Mansourian Sisters of Iran

Whether you are a fighter, a writer, or somewhere in between, we can all learn something from the story of the Mansourian Sisters of Iran.

Crossfire Vault – Platform’s Elaheh Mansourian opens up on representing Iranian martial arts, UFC aspirations

The Mansourian sisters of Iran, Elaheh, Shahrbanoo, and Soheila, were not only born into and overcame adversity, they used it to champion respect and develop infrastructure for female athletics in their native country of Iran.

Their success is changing the way Iran views supporting and developing its female athletes.

The documentary called Platform, reveals how all three sisters overcame societal gender barriers to become world champions in the martial art of Wushu.

“We wanted to bring hope to Iranian people. The first reason we did the film was for my country, Iran. After that, it was the world. We really wanted the world to see that with so many limitations and so many inequalities that there is not much possibilities for women in sports in Iran. Most of the opportunities are for men, so we wanted to show that it is possible to fight and reach our goal.”

We were fortunate to have a conversation with Elaheh, who told us from Shanghai in July 2021 that she is training hard in MMA to make it to the UFC. Her significant international following includes an admirer in current UFC strawweight champion Rose Namajunas.

And more importantly while there is still much work to be done, there are now more opportunities for female athletes in Iran because of efforts like those of the Mansourian sisters.

2022 should prove to be a pivotal year in their progress.

For most any combat sports athlete, an opportunity created is an opportunity cherished. Using your platform to help your country better support its female athletes is the ultimate form of humanity.

This is why MMA Crossfire is honoured to recognize the Mansourian Sisters of Iran as its Inspirational Fighter for 2021.

Champions. Ambassadors. Builders. Fighters.

Congratulations to the Mansourian Sisters. The world will be watching.


Kenai is a former Postmedia Network online news and sports editor. He is the Editor-in-Chief for MMA Crossfire.

Latest articles

Related articles