UAE jiu-jitsu federation organizes tournaments in Brazil
Competitions in Rio and Curitiba are sponsored by the Arab country’s jiu-jitsu federation. The events will be held in the next two weekends.
São Paulo – In the next two weekends, the cities of Rio de Janeiro and Curitiba, will hold tournaments sponsored by the United Arab Emirates Jiu-Jitsu Federation (UAEJJF). Athletes from Brazil and other countries will hit the mat trying to improve their ranking position and remain in the battle for a spot in the World Championships, scheduled for April 2017 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
The two events will award points for the world ranking but with a few differences. To be held at the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Arena, the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Tour is more of an exhibition competition, although it can also improve the ranking of fighters. The Curitiba event, the International Pro Jiu-Jitsu Championships, is a qualifying series that will award a direct spot in the next event, this time in Manaus, Amazonas, scheduled for February of next year, where the fighters that will compete in the main event in Abu Dhabi will be chosen.
The UAEJJF organizes a type of world championship circuit of jiu-jitsu, with the UAE’s capital hosting the main event. Admirers of the sport, the princes of Abu Dhabi look to promote it in their country and have in Brazil a great ally in their goal. Many Brazilian fighters moved to the country to teach jiu-jitsu to the Arabs – the sport was included in the curriculum of the country’s public schools.
“The idea is to organize something similar to the World Surf League, WSL, where each event serves as a qualifying stage to the next,” explains entrepreneur Rodrigo Forjado, one of the organizers of the event in Curitiba – he was the contact between UAEJJF and the state government, which supports the competition. “The Arabs invest in the sport because they like the values that are passed through to those practicing it.”
Rio de Janeiro
The Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Tour will be the first event to be held at the Olympic Arena, located within the Barra da Tijuca Olympic Park, after the Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games. According to the organization, more than 2,000 athletes have registered to fight on Saturday (12) and Sunday (13) – the black belt finals will be broadcast live by the cable channel Combate on both days, starting at 3:30 PM.
“We broke all the registration records,” said Walter Mattos, president of the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation and one of the founders of the tournament, which is organized jointly with the UAEJJF.
Among those registered, there are some Arab athletes, who are looking to add points to improve in the world ranking. Besides the points, winners take home cash prizes ranging from USD 500 to USD 2,000.
In the following weekend, on Saturday (19), Curitiba hosts the International Pro Jiu-Jitsu Championships. Many foreign fighters will compete on both events. But unlike the one in Rio, this tournament in Curitiba is worth a slot in the Brazilian finals in Manaus. “The Manaus champion and the two best-placed in the ranking will go to Abu Dhabi,” explained Forjado.
The tournament has the support of the state government and will be held at the gymnasium of Positivo University. “We have two hundred athletes registered, but the pace should pick up in the next few days,” said the business owner.
Admission is free for both the Rio and Curitiba events.
Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Jiu-Jitsu World Tour Rio de Janeiro
November 12 and 13
Olympic Arena, Barra da Tijuca Olympic Park
Curitiba International Pro Jiu-Jitsu Championship
Gymnasium of Positivo University, Curitiba
Find out more at https://www.uaejjf.org/index
*Translated by Sérgio Kakitani