Abu Dhabi: The curtain fell on the Jiu-Jitsu Challenge Championship on Sunday with large numbers of families and friends flocking in from different regions of the Emirates to support participants at the UAE University in Al Ain.
The final day of the three-day competition saw Sharjah Self-Defence Sports Club securing top spot, with Al Ain finishing runners-up and Bani Yas ending up in third place. The UAE topped the country’s ranking table, with Egypt and Syria following thereafter.
Commenting on the success of the festival, Youssef Abdullah Al Batran, a board member of the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation, said, “The Jiu-Jitsu Challenge Championship achieved great success at all levels, especially the number of participants and the distinguished performance they showed, the professionalism of the organisation, and the remarkable public presence of families.”
He continued, “The great performance shown by the players during the competitions gives us optimism that this year’s Jiu-Jitsu season will be exceptional, an extension of the successes achieved in the past years, and a translation of the federation’s efforts to continuously develop the sport of Jiu-Jitsu.”
Asmaa Saeed, a member of the Board of Directors of Sports Games at Al Ain Club, expressed her gratitude to the team of the UAE Ji-Jitsu Federation for their enthusiasm and eagerness in getting this tournament off the ground.
Saeed commented, “I congratulate the male and female players of Al Ain Club for their honourable performance in the competitions, and this tournament represents a successful start for them of the season. We have high hopes for them to achieve so much on the local scene and with the national teams in the future.”
The teens category competitions was a fun-filled spectacle with Fatima Ahmed Al Shamsi, yellow belt (44kg), from Al Zaydia School for Girls, who succeeded in winning the gold medal.
An elated Al Shamsi said, “I feel very happy to achieve first place in today’s competitions. The competition was very strong with the rest of the players, but the support of the family and the fans helped me to overcome the most difficult stages in the fights I went through. I thank the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation for organising such tournaments that pave the way for us to shine.”
Meanwhile, Rawda Al-Amiri, from the Palms Sports Academy (grey belt), achieved a silver medal in the 63kg.
On her success, she said, “It was a good achievement [for me], despite my strong ambition to get first place. The final match was somewhat difficult against a Brazilian player but winning and losing is part of the game. We have to work hard in the coming days and address our weaknesses. The most important thing is sportsmanship and respect for the opponent.”
Russian player German Kiselev (grey belt) won the 85kg gold medal.
“I am happy with this achievement, and I would like to thank the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation and Al Ain Club for providing this opportunity to foreign players to participate in these distinguished tournaments,” the Al Ain club participant noted.
“We feel as if we are in our second country and we enjoy the best treatment from the federation and the club. There is no doubt that the experience of participating in the Challenge Championship is unparalleled when it comes to the rest of the world, especially since the atmosphere of the tournament and the splendour of the organisation represent the perfect preparation for us to start an exemplary professional career.”