He went nine months without doing Jiu-Jitsu, not even putting on a gi, because of an injured knee. After undergoing surgery in May 2011, the sweat Tarsis dripped was in the physiotherapy room.
Last weekend, still rusty, Tarsis resolved to stick his neck out at the Gramado, Brazil leg of tryouts for the Abu Dhabi WPJJC, to recuperate his confidence. Everything worked out just fine. In the under 92kg division he just missed winning gold, but still the Alliance ace was positive about his performance.
“I felt a lack of wind; but thank God I didn’t feel any injuries. Now it’s back to physical conditioning to get my strength back and not tire out so much, to make it back to the top,” remarked the black belt from São Paulo while in the VIP lounge at Porto Alegre airport.
“For the first time in a long while I totally felt the adrenaline starting with the first match on. Heavy legs… But the main thing was to recover my confidence in the movements,” explained Tarsis.
SOUZA DEFEATED TARSIS 4-0 IN THE FINAL
“I was really tired in the final against Alexandre Souza; my legs were spent. When he broke my grips to pass, I hung on however best I could. He stuck in the hooks and won by 4-0. In the semifinal with Alexandro Ceconi I was already starting to feel fatigue. When he applied pressure from the top, I put him in 50/50 guard and thought, ‘It’s in God’s hands now.’ I remembered how in Abu Dhabi he even passed Rômulo Barral’s guard—something almost no one manages to do. But my guard worked; I hung on and he didn’t pass, so I kept the score at 2-0,” he said, summarizing his assessment of what happened. (Watch the semifinal between Tarsis and Ceconi below.)
The champion, Alexandre de Souza, another missing from the competition scene as of late, commented on his win: “I felt some nagging injuries, but I’m doing a good job of picking the competitions I enter; that’s why people haven’t seen me competing lately. In the final I figured Tarsis was going to pull, so I won that one on pressure, breaking his grips and taking his back. I tried to get his neck but he defended well. Now it’s on to fighting for gold in Abu Dhabi in April,” said the trouts winner in celebration.