Ever since receiving his black belt, Marcus “Bochecha” Almeida has been keeping the same pace as he had at the other belt levels. World champion at weight and open weight as a brown belt, at black Bochecha has already won events like the No-Gi Worlds. Last Saturday he had another crowning achievement. The CheckMat representative won his weight and the open weight class once again, at the World Pro tryouts in Las Vegas. Check out the chat he had with GRACIEMAG.com:
What did you make of your performance at the tryouts?
It was better, much better than I had hoped for because I’d decided to fight at the last minute and ended up winning both divisions. Truth is, I was only going to compete in New Jersey, but decided to try my luck in Las Vegas too. If I didn’t win, I’d still have another chance, but everything worked out in the end, thank God. I managed to fight well and get what was most important, the ticket to Abu Dhabi, and I got four thousand dollars to boot!
What are your thoughts on the side competition against Antonio Braga Neto, in two finals?
I always watched and took pleasure in seeing Braga Neto, as he has attacking Jiu-Jitsu. For sure it was an honor to fight him. And they were extremely tough battles. In the first mach, I managed to sweep at the very end, after falling behind 4 to 0 on advantage points. In the second, I managed to take the lead with a takedown and two passes. He swept me at the very end. They were two really tough matches.
What are your upcoming challenges?
Now I’m focused on the Pan, the World Pro and the Worlds. We’ll have a camp over in Florida and, for sure, the whole team will do well at these competitions.
Do you feel you’re mature enough to conquer the Abu Dhabi title this year?
I think so. I’m more mature and comfortable with six-minute matches; I can impose a good rhythm. But I know it will be a high-level championship. We’re all ready for it. I’d like to thank everyone who supported me for these tryouts, the whole crew at Armory CheckMat.