Uncategorised • 21st Oct, 13 •
After 7 weeks of hard preparation, countless hours on the mats, the time had finally arrived to compete in my first European No Gi tournament. The IBJJF European No Gi was held in Crystal Palace National Event Centre in London on the Sunday the 21st of October. Myself and Mark O Brien headed over to London on Friday. On Saturday 20th there was the IBJJF London Open Gi Tournament and we decided that this was a good way to warm up for the big one the following day. The venue for both competitions was at the same place. The Crystal Palace centre was a fantastic venue for the tournament and the seats were filled with spectators, I estimated about 1500 to 2000 seats.(rough guess).
My Gi fighting was a bit rusty because I spent all of the 7 weeks preparation working NO GI but I managed to get Silver in my division. I was defeated 8-2 in points by a better gameplan from a BJJ practitioner from Israel who afterwards was kind enough to show me his control technique. Mark pulled off an excellent example of an invert triangle choke in his first match and fought hard to attain the Bronze in his division but was eventually defeat by an advantage point from an Italian competitor who went on to win gold.
The main attraction was a fantastic experience. The European Championship was organised to the highest level with eight mat areas on the go all the time. During the course of the day you could see BJJ in all its glory with Legends of the art both competing like Michael Langhi or spectating like Roger Gracie. The competitors that I face on the mat were good practitioners coming from England, Germany and Italy. I was fortunate enough to have a good corner that pushed me on through injury to win Gold in my division. It was an excellent experience and will no doubt be repeated again next year.