Saturday was a day of first-rate Jiu-Jitsu at Delfim academy, in Rio de Janeiro’s Tijuca borough. Copa Pódio held the draw to determine the two Middleweight GP groups, and also put on two matches to serve as an appetizer for what’s to come when the big event rolls around on 21 July 21.
The first match resulted in Victor Bomfim defeating Ryan Gracie Team’s Diogo Almeida to qualify for the final berth in the Middleweight GP. Could he be the one to take top spot against world-elite competition come the 21st? Wait and find out.
The second supermatch featured the big star of the night, 2010 world champion Tarsis Humphreys of Alliance team, who took on GFTeam’s Wancler Oliveira. Wancler proved to be a hard nut to crack, winning the match by an advantage point from half-guard, and now he goes on to compete in the marquee superfight at the end-of-the-year event against the winner between Guto Campos and Raphael Abi-Rihan.
Speaking of Abi-Rihan, he made his debut as a Jiu-Jitsu commentator at the Copa Pódio draw, and seemed to take a liking for the craft. “I liked it. Now I know what I’m going to do when I stop fighting,” he joked afterward.
The two groups for July 21 events now are: Green – Nivaldo Oliveira, Victor Bomfim, Davi Ramos, André Bastos and Vinicius Marinho; Yellow – Otavio Sousa, Leandro Lo, Felipe “Preguiça” Pena, Rafael “Formiga” Barbosa and Dimitrius Souza.
Check out the finest images from the sumptuous event through the keen eye of Gustavo Aragão.