Saturday featured the absolute black belt dispute and the brown belt championship at the Tijuca Tennis Club, where the Brazilian National Jiu-Jitsu Championship is taking place. Bernardo Faria and Rafael Lovato made it to the final of the absolute dispute. In the female division, Luanna Alzuguir and Luzia Fernandes will decide the gold medal winner.
Pan American champion at weight and open weight Bernardo is shooting for a sequel at the Brazilian Nationals. In reaching the final, the Alliance beast beat his first opponent on points, then went past Eduardo Milioli (Rilion Gracie) with a score of 7 to 2. In the semifinal he was losing on advantage points to Rodrigo Cavaca (Check Mat), but rallied back with a sweep. He took further lead with a guard pass, after Cavaca made a failed attempt at pulling guard.
At the other end of the bracket, Rafael Lovato beat three opponents. In the semifinal, he beat a weary Tarsis Humphreys (Alliance), who had just had a hard-fought battle with Murilo Santana (Barbosa).
“I beat Lovato before, but I’m not thinking about that this weekend. He’s a great fighter and every fight is unique. I hope to beat him again, but I know it’s going to be war,” says Bernardo Faria in anticipation.
Some of the top fighters in the mix didn’t get involved in the absolute dispute, like Ricardo Demente an Antonio Braga Neto.
Among the ladies, the final will be a David-versus-Goliath-style fight: the light-weighing Luanna Alzuguir (Alliance) beat two opponents and now faces the much heavier Luzia Fernandes (Gracie Barra) in the decider. Luzia beat two opponents and didn’t need to dispute the semifinal, as Marina Ribeiro (Check Mat) opted not to fight so as to save her energy for the weight group final this Sunday.
The brown belt division has its champions. In first, Guilherme Montenegro (Osvaldo Alves), roosterweight; Ary Farias (Atos), light featherweight; Daniel Nogueira (Alliance), featherweight; Leandro Nascimento (Barbosa), lightweight; Diego Borges (Osvaldo Alves), middleweight; Igor Ribeiro (Castro JJ), medium heavyeweight; Antonio Junior (CheckMat), heavyweight; Marcus Bochecha (CheckMat), super heavyweight; and Adrinei Piaia (Sul JJ), ultra heavyweight.