Tanquinho trains with Ben Henderson’s coach ahead of Abu Dhabi

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Augusto Tanquinho in the match against Isaque Paiva in Pan 2013. Photo: Ivan Trindade/ GracieMag

Augusto Tanquinho used the IBJJF Pan in March as a trial of fire for the WPJJC, a professional event scheduled for April 13 and 14, in Abu Dhabi.

In the Pan, the black belt from Soul Fighters was stopped in the featherweight semifinal by Rubens Cobrinha. It did not shake the fighter, who ensured that he will go to the UAE with a mission: regain the title in the up to 65kg category.

GracieMag: You are going to the WPJJC in Abu Dhabi with the bronze in Pan 2013. Are you ready to win?

AUGUSTO TANQUINHO: I am ready. The last time I attended was in 2011, and back then it allowed anyone to fight the trials anywhere in the world. I think the event was filled with beasts for that reason, and it was the most difficult year. And yet, I won. In 2012, I couldn’t fight because I was recovering from a cervical surgery, and now in 2013 I’m going there to regain my title. I’m very excited to travel.

How is your training for the tournament?

I am keeping the same preparation I did for the Pan and I will keep it until the Worlds. I’m working out at the gym MMA Lab, with the same guy that trains Ben Henderson, so my cardio is great. And the Jiu-Jitsu training with Megaton Dias is in full swing.

How many hours are you training daily?

An average of six to eight hours. I like to train all aspects of the fight, I want to feel comfortable in any area. Anyway, it depends on the day, some days I train more takedowns, other times I do more guard passes or moves in some specific area. The training is very complete.

What is a tip that you can offer the reader who is starting in the art?

The best tip is to relax and don’t think that you are good in some area. Train everything and I guarantee you will be a complete athlete. Nowadays, I see blue belts and purple belts just wanting to play bottom, do the berimbolo, but when they are on top, they don’t know how to pass the guard. Do the modern game, but do not forget that in order to be a champion you have to be complete.

Who are the main opponents in your division in Abu Dhabi?

I haven’t checked the list of athletes, but I’m sure I’ll just have tough opponents. I’ll be ready to face anyone and I intend to bring the title back.

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