World Pro: check out who’s still in the race in Rio

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The best of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is heating up the Rio de Janeiro autumn even more than it has been these days, and those who opted to stay off the beach witnessed brilliant matches at the Club de Regatas do Flamengo, at the Rio de Janeiro tryouts for the World Pro Jiu-Jitsu Cup .

In the under 65kg category, always-ready Rafael Mendes showed he’s still doing his homework and advanced to the quarter-finals, to take place tomorrow. The Atos prodigy won all three of his matches by submission, with his flash armbar win over Gabriel Willcox standing out among them, and earning him his place in the quarterfinals.

Rafael Mendes gets the choke. Photo: Carlos Ozorio

In the under 74kg division, Mário Reis, Celsinho and Durinho also remain alive in the tryouts, the champions of which will earn a paid trip to Abu Dhabi for the main event on April 17. Celsinho, who had an injury-wracked 2009, came on strong pulling off solid finishes. Another to put in a stellar performance was Moacir Mendes, avenger of his teacher Mario Reis, who in the tryouts in Gramado lost to Vitor Henrique. Moacir ended Vitor’s campaign with a collar choke not often seen in competition these days.

The under 83kg division is bound to go off on Sunday. Among those who made it through in the category with an average of three bouts to reach the quarter-finals, beasts like Tiago Alves, Guto Campos, Victor Bonfim, Pe de Chumbo and Vinicius Marinho will be hard to keep up with.

Another promising category is the under 92kg. Antonio Braga Neto finished all three combatants in his way. A battle worth watching features Rodolfo Vieira and Leo Nogueira. However, there’s a storm brewing with monsters like Bernardo Augusto, Mauro Santiago, Ricardo Evangelista and Alexandre de Souza still in the running.

In the over 92kg class, Augusto Ferrari is a force to be reckoned with and, among the ladies, special attention was drawn to the battle of the Michelles (Tavares and Nicolini).  Tavares saw herself through with a guard pass in this one.

This Sunday the matches will be broadcast live (visit http://www.abudhabiprotrials.com/) for only $ 4.95. Entrance to the gym costs 30 reais.

Check out tomorrow’s lineup:

Female:

63 kg

Marina Medeiros (Checkmat) vs Hellen Bastos (GFTeam)

Luanna Alzuguir (Alliance) vs Elisângela (Checkmat)

Ana Maria India (Checkmat) vs Bruna Ribeiro (Atos)

Michelle Tavares (Gracie Tijuca) vs Jessica Arlindo (Miquinha)

Over 63kg

Talita Nogueira (Ryan Gracie) vs Danuza Branco (CTCL)

Luzia Fernandes (Gracie Barra) vs Anna Beth (Barbosa)

Diana Menezes (Bonsai) vs Ludmila Espíndola (Checkmat)

Carla Roberto (Gracie Barra) vs Erica Correa (FBJJ)

Male:

Over 92kg

Alexandre Zanetti vs Carlos Mahoney

Augusto Ferrari (Barbosa) vs Charles Dantas

Gabriel Lirio (Checkmat) vs Marcus Almeida

Thiago Silva (Eduardo Fran) vs Bruno Veloso (Nova União)

Under 92kg

Antonio Braga Neto (Gordo JJ) vs. Antonio Figueiredo (Checkmat)

Alexandre Souza (Gracie Floripa) vs Mauro Santiago (Gracie Barra)

Rodolfo Vieira (GFTeam) vs Leonardo Nogueira (Alliance)

Bernardo Augusto (Alliance) vs Ricardo Evangelista (GFTeam)

83kg

Guto Campos (Atos Guetho) vs Vitor Bonfim (Gordo)

Mauricio Aguilar (Gracie Barra) vs Vinicius Marinho (GFTeam)

Delson Lead Foot (Gracie Pitbull) vs Chick Luiz Serafim (BTT)

Tiago Alves (Barbosa) vs David da Silva

Under 74kg

Celsinho Venícius (Ryan Gracie) vs Thiago Rocha (Alliance)

Mario Reis (Gracie Barra) vs Rodrigo Caporal (Atos)

Rafael Formiga (Soul Fighters) vs Moacir Mendes (Gracie Barra)

Gilbert Durinho (Atos) vs Rodolfo Nygard (Gracie Barra)

65kg

Denilson Pimenta (GFTeam) vs Marcos Alexandre (Asle)

Rafael Mendes (Atos) vs Maximiliano Campos (Checkmat)

Eduardo Ramos (Atos) vs Ivaniel Oliveira (Carioca Team)

Theodoro Canal (GFTeam) vs Leonardo de Souza (Gordo)

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