Ricardo “Demente” Abreu was one of the standouts of the over 92kg (over 202 lbs) division in Gramado. At the first of two Brazilian tryouts for the World Pro Jiu-Jitsu Cup, last weekend, the Sao Paulo native guaranteed his place at the main event with all expenses paid. Demente enters as one of the favorites in the absolute, which this year rewards the winner 12 thousand dollars. The triumph in Rio Grande do Sul filled the black belt with confidence.
“I have great expectations, the best. To go over there after winning the trials adds that extra flame to the fire. I can see I’m on the right track and it’s extra incentive, to focus and polish up what I’ve had difficulty with so I can get out there 100% and have a great competition, with good technique and impeccable physical conditioning,” remarked Demente.
And the path that secured him his spot in Abu Dhabi wasn’t an easy one. In the grand finale, the Nova Uniao representative faced Alexandre de Souza, owner of a guard that hopelessly entraps his opponents.
“His guard is really good, and he has a grip like glue. But I managed to keep calm and think up a strategy during the match to not make any mistakes. You can’t get fear-stricken, because he’s really good at the counter-attack. I imposed my rhythm in the end, managed to get his leg to drop and pass his guard in the final seconds. I did it with a lot of sweat, sacrifice and God’s blessing,” he said in celebration.
Before the World Pro, Ricardo should see action again. The fighter wants to participate in the Jiu-Jitsu Pan-American, to take place from April 8 to 11, in California.
“I really want to compete at the Pan-American. I’m already working on getting sponsors for the trip. That will be really important. I’m going to compete at this Pan and the other big competitions,” he says, adding that he plans to be in even better shape for his upcoming challenges.
“I’m training really well. I’m focused and have a really good team at XGym. It’s a new life, because of their professionalism. I get goose bumps, I’m so excited. I think: “Jeez, how could I not have known about all this,” he told GRACIEMAG.com in finishing.
The tryouts for the Abu Dhabi World Pro in Rio de Janeiro will take place on the 27th and 28th of March. Sign-ups can be performed on the website www.abudhabipro.com.br.