Abu Dhabi: Commando Group finished champions in the AJP Tour UAE National Jiu-Jitsu Championship 2024 — Gi held at Mubadala Arena in Zayed Sports City on Sunday.
A.F.N.T claimed the second place while Sharjah Self Defence took the third spot in the event, organised by the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation (UAEJJF) in collaboration with the Abu Dhabi Jiu-Jitsu Pro (AJP).
UAEJJ Arena academy took the first place while Sharjah Self-Defense and Palms Sports bagged the second and third spot respectively in the competitions held for kids, infant, and junior divisions
In the Teen and Master divisions, Commando Group topped the medal table, pushing A.F.N.T to a close second place, while Al Jazira Jiu-Jitsu Club secured the third position.
The Commando Group made a significant impact on the tournament with the participation of more than 200 athletes across various categories, including the professional category.
Thiago Barreto, coach of the Commando Group, said: “I am proud of the performance of our athletes at the AJP Tour UAE National Jiu-Jitsu Championship. I would like to express my gratitude to the UAEJJF for organising this championship, which offered an unparalleled experience for athletes and fans alike.”
“I believe the impressive performances by the Commando Group can be attributed to the dedication of the athletes, their sacrifices, and their desire to elevate the level of their technical skills. Our players deserve the title, as they performed outstandingly, demonstrating remarkable technical prowess and determination.”
Brazilian Christian Lara, who scooped gold in the Men’s Gi/Brown/Professional/69kg division representing Commando Group, said: “I can’t be happier about winning the gold medal in the AJP Tour UAE National Jiu-Jitsu Championship. I faced some of the most brilliant players in the world, and the competitive atmosphere at the arena was amazing. I am sure it will enhance the physical and mental aspects of preparation for future tournaments.”
Mohammed Saeed Alketbi of Al Ain Jiu-Jitsu Club, who won gold in the Men’s Gi/Purple/Professional/56kg division, said: “I participated in the championship because it provides a good opportunity for me to attain full physical and mental readiness before participating in the upcoming international tournaments. I am very happy to earn 1000 AJP ranking points, and I am looking forward to adding more in the coming days.”
Fahad Al Shamsi, Secretary General of the UAE and Asian Jiu-Jitsu Federations said: “The AJP Tour UAE National Jiu-Jitsu Championship met our organisational and technical goals, attracting a sizeable crowd and media attention. It showcased world-class competitions, enabling local and international athletes, especially in the black and brown belt divisions, to test their skills and assess their physical and mental readiness in the beginning of the new season.
“The Championship, which marked the first event in the UAEJJF’s calendar, boosted the optimism of the athletes for what promises to be an action-packed season and served as a platform for discovering new talents. Over three days, we witnessed impressive performances from emerging athletes who have high potential for growth and professional careers in the sport.”
Al Shamsi, further, praised the outstanding performance of Emirati athletes, particularly in the professional category, emphasising that the UAE continues to produce champions and is at the forefront of promoting jiu-jitsu at the international level.
Tareq Al Bahri, General Manager at AJP, noted that the increased participation of athletes in the championship demonstrates that clubs and academies acknowledge the championship’s role in elevating athletes’ physical and mental levels, as well as in developing and refining their skills, by engaging with strong players who have a long career and experience.
“Athletes and clubs try not to miss the AJP Tour UAE National Jiu-Jitsu Championship, as it offers 1,000 AJP ranking points for the first place winners, contributing to the enhancement of their rankings in their respective weight and belt categories. This will help them qualify for the Abu Dhabi World Jiu-Jitsu Awards at the end of the season, which celebrates the best individual winners, as well as the best local and international clubs and academies. Accumulating ranking points will also help athletes with other benefits, such as eligibility for travel benefits during the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship,” added Al Bahri.