Cobrinha to compete at Pan and guarantees: “It’s my last year as a competitor”

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Anyone following @CobrinhaCharles on twitter probably had an inkling, but went after the four-time world champion for confirmation. The answer was yes, Cobrinha is yet another black belt confirmed for the Jiu-Jitsu Pan-American 2010. (Not in yet? Sign up here with discount by Monday)

Nearly 50 black belts are signed up for the adult division, and featherweight Cobrinha is promising. Besides the already confirmed Christopher Story, Guilherme Lyra, Marcelo Brandão, Gustavo Carpio and Sasa Yukinori, beasts like the Mendes brothers, Mario Reis, Wellington Megaton and Brazilian National Champion in 2008 Marcelino Freitas, who is training with Vitor Shaolin in New York, should come in strong.

Rubens knows he has his work cut out for him, and is training to hang on to his title and win his fifth Pan-American championship at black belt. “Yes, I’m training for the Pan to get there and throw some weight around,” he laughs. “Master Romero Jacare heads my training at Alliance Atlanta. This will be my last year competing, so I want to do the Pan and the Worlds and then dedicate myself to the career of a teacher. What little I know I want to share with my students.”

Cobrinha wins his fourth world title against Bruno Frazatto in 2009, in a photo by Ivan Trindade. The Alliance teacher competes in April for another fourth title

Cobrinha admits that retiring won’t be an easy decision to make.

“I know it won’t be easy for me at all to stay out of the tournaments, since I’m a born competitor. Even when playing marbles I dedicate myself to do my best; I’ve been like that my whole life. I’m no better than anyone else, but I always pursue perfection, something nearly impossible to achieve. Since these days you have to be 100% professional in training, you end up forsaking a lot of other things to focus exclusively on training.

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