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First Leg of Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Jiu-jitsu Tour in Japan Finds Huge Success

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Abu Dhabi, UAE, 30th August, 2015: The UAE Jiu-jitsu Federation (UAEJJF), the official authority for Jiu-jitsu in the United Arab Emirates, successfully concluded the first leg of the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam, on 29 August, at the Sumida City Gymnasium, Tokyo, Japan. This landmark event in the history of international jiu-jitsu brought together some of the sport’s most acclaimed athletes and teams to compete for top honors. The action-packed tournament brought hundreds of jiu-jitsu fans and spectators from across the world to the venue.

More than 400 participants, including male and female competitors, from 23 countries competed in the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam tournament. The UAE had one of the strongest contingents at the competition. Athletes from the UAE took part in the white, blue, purple, brown and black categories.

The event held on 29 August had white, blue, purple, brown and black belt matches taking place during the day. Award and medal presentations were also held on the day to honour winners. Medals were awarded for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places in each division. The athletes also won prize money ranging from USD500 to 2,000 in several categories, including open weight, Master Black belt; white, blue, purple, brown and black belt categories for both men and women.

Victor Yoshida from infight Japan, Brazil won the men’s white adult title (62kg) and Mariia Shamina from Isshin Jiujitsu, Russia (77kg) won the women’s white adult title. Naseer Omar Barhshid from the UAEJJ national team won first place in white adult male (77kg) division. Saeed Alshamsi from the UAEJJ team won third place in the white adult (69 kg) division. Takayuki Seki from Axis Jiu-Jitsu Academy from Japan won the title in the adult white (94kg+) division. Naser Omar Barshid from the UAEJJ team also won third place in the white adult open title. Andy Murasaki from Impacto Japan BJJ, from Brazil won first place.

Winners for the first place in the blue (62 kg) category for men and women were Syunsuke Koshiduka from Nova Uniao Japan, and Annie Ramirez from Clube de Jiu Jitsu, Philippines. Rogerio Morino from Paraestra Kichijoji, Brazil won the blue master open weight 1 title. Winners for the first place in the purple master (62kg) category for men and women were Ayumi Okoba from Axis Jiu-Jitsu Academy, Japan and Margot Ciccarelli (70 kg) from Atos Jiu- Jistu Team Grips Hk, Italy.

Winners for the first place in the brown/black master for men was Rodrigo De Souza from Impacto Japan B, Brazil; while Marina Soares Ribeiro, from Checkmate Rv, Brazil was a winner of brown/black division open weight women category. Paulo Jose Pinto from Command Group BJJ, Brazil won the black master 1 title and Marcos Lima Oliveira from Bonsai Jiu-Jitsu Japan won the title for the black master open weight division. Vanderlei Takasaki from Impacto Japan Bjj, Brazil won the male brown adult title (69 kg) and Arya Esfandmaz from Gracie Barra Knightsbridge, UK won the male brown adult title (94+kg).

Tomoyuki Hashimoto from Carpe Diem Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Japan; Tiago Bravo Santos from Al Ain Jiu-Jitsu Club (Adult), Brazil; Roberto Satoshi Souza from Bonsai Jiu-Jitsu Japan, Brazil; Clark Gracie from Clark Gracie Jiu Jitsu Academy, US; Gregor Gracie from Renzo Gracie Ny, Brazil and Erberth Santos Mesquita, Guigo Jiu Jitsu, Brazil; won top spots in different weight classes in the male adult black category.

Erberth Santos was the standout of the event with double gold in the (94+kg) and the open class divisions. In the absolute final, he choked Rodrigo Caporal for the gold medal.

The UAE team won 12 medals in total: 3 gold, 4 silver and 5 bronze. The gold medals went to Naser Al Buraiki (white, 77 kg), Mohammed Al Qubaisi (brown, 77kg) and Khalfan Belhoul (purple, 85kg). The silver medals went to Mohammad Al Hameli (white, 77 kg), Saif Al Qubaisi (blue, 77kg), Faisal Al Ketbi (black, 94kg) and Taleb Saleh (black, 69kg). The bronze medals went to Saeed Alshamsi (white, 69kg), Hamdan Alblooshi (blue, 85 kg), Zayed Alkaabi (purple, 94 kg), and Naser Al Buraiki and Saoud Alhammadi (purple) in the open weight category.

The first-place winners in the respective weight categories of the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam received 40 points. The second-place winners received 20 points and the third-place winners received 10 points. In the open weight category, the first-place winner received 60 points, while the second-place winner got 30 points, with the third-place winner receiving 15 points.

This first leg of the Grand Slam reinforced the UAEJJF’s growing profile as the facilitator for international sport, and Abu Dhabi’s status as the ‘world capital’ of jiu-jitsu. Commenting on the conclusion of the Tokyo tournament, H.E. Abdulmunam Al Hashemi, Chairman of the UAE Jiu-jitsu Federation said, “The initiation of the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam in Japan was a great start to this landmark event. The tournament was a great success and exceeded our expectations on all fronts. This was also a great experience for the UAE national jiu jitsu team in terms of exposure. We are very happy with their performance and looking forward to seeing them excel in all the tournaments. The success of the Tokyo leg of the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam has enabled the UAE Jiu-jitsu Federation to get closer to its goal of becoming a globally recognized entity in sport of jiu jitsu.”

The mega sporting event’s second tournament will be held at the Azusa Pacific University in Los Angeles, USA, in October this year. The third competition will be held at the HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and the fourth one will be staged at the ExCel London, in the UK. The final event, the Abu Dhabi World Pro, will be held in Abu Dhabi in the UAE.

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