Demente goes in at weight and open weight: “I want that ticket for the Worlds!”

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Demente sets up a choke. Photo: Carlos Ozorio

Always a contender for the title, Ricardo “Demente” Abreu told he’s confirmed for the Brazilian Nationals. The competition kicked off this Saturday at Rio de Janeiro’s Tijuca Tennis Club, but the black belts will only see action next week.

“I’ll be there, barring unforeseen circumstances. I’m going to sign up this Monday. These last few days I had the flu and was stuck in bed. But I spoke to my coach, Rogério Camões, and we decided I should fight. The Brazilian Nationals, besides being a big event, is included in our planned preparations for the Worlds,” he says.

“I’m going to fight in my weight division and the absolute. I want that ticket for the Worlds!” he adds.

This week, a tough nut to crack confirmed he’ll be at the Worlds: Xande Ribeiro. Demente, who could throw a wrench in Xande or Roger Gracie’s plans to win a third absolute, heaped praise on Ribeiro for entering the dispute.

“I think it’s great and I’m happy there will be a lot of good fights, high-level opponents. That stimulates us to train more and more and, the tougher the opponent, the greater the victory. But I don’t have any specific opponent in mind; my focus is the competition, if just because there are so many tough athletes in there. But, if I cross pass with one of them, it will be a phenomenal match and I’ll give it my all. Xande being in there just boosts the value of the event. This Worlds will be a great show for anyone watching,” he says in finishing.

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