The 2017 Abu Dhabi World Professional jiu-Jitsu Championship is underway this week in the United Arab Emirates. As you probably know the UAEJJF has introduced a few changes in the way the brackets are drawn to ensure that athletes from a more diverse number of countries are present in the main stage.
With that, this year’s event will feature country qualifiers this Thursday, April 20. The brackets will determine who is the second athlete of each country present in the main bracket of the adult and master 1 brown belt and black belt division (brown/black belt for women).
Brazil , USA, Canada and UK are the four nations with athletes enough to require country qualifiers. The Brazilian brackets feature some huge names. Here’s a quick roundup of all the matches that could take place at the IPIC Arena on the way to the main bracket.
Male Adult – Black Belt
56kg – Rodnei Junior is the ranking leader and already secured his spot in the main bracket. Wellington de Lima, Rodnei Junior and Alex Taveira, Ariel Amaral and Huendel Osaki will battle for the second spot.
62kg – Hiago George is the ranking leader. Gabriel Lima, Cleber Fernandes, Lucas Dantas and Bruno Cabral will fight it out to be in the main bracket.
69kg – Tiago Bravo built a great campaign throughout the season and secure his spot in the main bracket. The qualifier will be a nail biter with huge names such as Grand Slam champions Isaque Paiva, Italo Lins, as well as Victor Morais, Talidon Costa and others.
77kg – With three titles in five Grand Slam Events, Gabriel Arges secured his spot as #1 for Brazil. That leaves 16 other of Arges’ countrymen fighting for the second spot, including names like two-time ADWPJJC champion Roberto Satoshi, Luan Carvalho, Isaque Bahiense, Rodrigo Caporal, Jhonny Souza, among ohers. The USA also has a qualifier to decide who’s going to be Edwin Najmi’s companion. AJ Agazarm and John Satava are in for the battle.
85kg – Marcos Costa made to the main bracket after Arges decided to compete in the 77kg division. Fifteen other Brazilians will fight for a spot, including ADWPJJC champion Claudio Calasans, Marcos Souza, Rodrigo Fajardo, Lucas Barbosa, among others. In this bracket, the UK also has a qualifiers, but two athletes will make it to the main bracket. Gareth Neale, Louis Williams and Ross Keeping are in the mix.
94kg – Xande Ribeiro is the one already qualified for the main bracket. The 2016 ADWPJJC open class champion Felipe Pena is in the qualifier bracket alongside upcoming talent Nicholas Meregali, Rodolpho Bonfim, Helton Junior and others.
110kg – The overal athlete’s ranking leader Jose Junior is the Brazilian in the main bracket. Nine other athletes will fight for the second spot. 2016 ADWPJJC champion Erberth Santos is in the mix. Leandro Lo was also in this bracket, but withdrew due to injury. Gustavo Dias and Andre Campos are also big contenders.
Female – Brown/Black Belt
49kg – Mayssa Bastos is secured in the main bracket. Angela de Carvalho, Clarissa Lacerda and Isabela Couto will battle for the second spot.
55kg – Talita Alencar is in the bracket. Thamires Aquino and Tamiris Vieira will clash for the second spot.
62kg – Luiza Monteiro is in the main bracket ready to go. 2016 ADWPJJC champion Bia Mesquita, upcoming talent Bia Basílio, as well as Luciana Kusaka, Lauriane Mendes and Franciele Nascimento will battle for the second spot. In this bracket, Erica Alicia is the ranking leader for the USA, while Erin Herle and Tammi Musumeci will fight for the country’s second spot.
70kg – Ana Carolina Vieira is Brazil’s name in the main bracket. Brenda Heller, Priscilla Cerqueira, Bruna Menezes, Nathalia de Sousa, among others will compete for the second spot. In this bracket, he USA has Melissa Davis and Amanda Benavides and Adriana Rascon will compete for the second spot.
90kg – Powerhouse Nathiely de Jesus, winner of three out of four Grand Slam events this season, is the Brazilian name here. Talita Nogueira, Vanessa do Nascimento, Jessica da Silva and Ewelin Arruda will decide who’s the other one.
The action for the qualifiers kick off this Thursday, April 20, 11AM local time (midnight in Los Angeles, 3AM in New York).
Click here for the full brackets.