Rodrigo Cavaca is yet another of the beasts to stick his neck out at the Brazilian Nationals to start this weekend at the Tijuca Tennis Club, in Rio de Janeiro. The black belt is coming off a string of good results, and nothing less than gold at the Nationals interests him.
“I’m in and will leave for Rio the day after tomorrow to train with Ricardo Vieira and to accompany my white to purple belt students, who fight this weekend,” says the CheckMat representative.
On the 15th and 16th of May it will be the black belts’ turn to hit the mats. Cavaca will compete on both days, since the absolute is an obsession of his.
“I’m going in at weight and in the absolute. This year will be rough; I’ve just missed before, but I can’t give up. I have to win a CBJJ or IBJJF absolute. This year I was runner-up in Europe and third at the Pan. I have to make it!”
As added incentive, last weekend Cavaca won his supermatch at the SP Cup. The result lifted his spirits.
I fought well at that event in São Paulo and it was great. They handed out 30 travel packages for the Worlds. As I was absolute champion last year, I had a supermatch this year and hung on to my belt. I faced Tiago Alves, a student of Barbosa’s, and right off the bat I managed to sink a triangle and spin to his arm to finish. Tiago is a really tough guy and that was my moment.”
But his greater goal is the Jiu-Jitsu World Championship to take place in California from the 3rd to the 6th of June.
“I’ll do the Brazilian Nationals, return to Santos and, on the 20th, I’ll head for the United States, where we’ll have a training camp for the Worlds. Last year the event showed how it just gets bigger and bigger. There’s nowhere to run, all the divisions are tough. There are several favorites in each weight class, each with a shot at becoming champion. It’ll be rough,” he forecasts.
“Last year I lost the ultra heavyweight decider to (Gabriel) Vella by two advantages. This time I’m going in more mature and better prepared. I feel I’ve evolved a lot, corrected some errors and this is my greater objective. This year I can’t strike out,” he says in finishing.