“The cream of the crop will be at this year’s Worlds”

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That statement was made by Master Romero Jacaré on his way to the brackets setting session for the 2010 Worlds, to kick off this Thursday.

Driving on the highway from Los Angeles to Irvine, the master brought up the fact he was on a mountain road and the connection could break up. But GRACIEMAG.com didn’t miss a thing.

The best of what the headmaster of Alliance had to say can be found below.

Romero heads a motivated group in Atlanta

Cobrinha’s fifth
“Cobrinha to me has a great shot at winning his fifth world championship in a row as a featherweight; an unprecedented achievement. He lost to Rafael(Mendes) just now at the Brazilian Nationals in a bout that was decided in the details, 4 to 2 on points. But I believe he’s more confident now, with Rafa’s game in his head, and he spent a month training with Alliance in Brazil. And Cobrinha has a good head on his shoulders, he doesn’t let things get to him, doesn’t feel pressured. That’s why I feel he has a great chance of winning and is a favorite.”

Absolute brown
“My money in the absolute brown belt is on Ian (McPherson) from Atlanta, for what he has been winning for quite some time now. But we have others in the mix, and some other surprises. It’s worth remembering that only brown belts who make it to the winners’ stand get in the absolute, so a lot of tough guys will fall along the way. But we have Dave Kohl, a super heavyweight under Franjinha, and Gustavo Goulart, who’s been winning everything.

Cream of the crop
To me this Worlds will have the cream of the crop in the sport, and each year the level gets even higher. In the brown belt division, for example, we may see the best matches of the tournament, like our Michel Langhi against Ary Farias (Atos). Imagine what that match would be like. And then there’s Gustavo Goulart and Lucas Rocha (Gracie Barra). It will go off.

Kayron in the black belt middleweight group
“I don’t see Kayron as a surprise when he won the Pan. Even less experienced as a black belt than Sergio Moraes, he’s been competing since he was a kid. He can’t be seen as a surprise and he has the same chances as all the rest, as does Abmar Barbosa.”

Last training session in Atlanta
“The 30th was the last day of hard training for the Worlds. We’re taking a team of 30 athletes from Atlanta, all really well trained and ready to defend our team title. Not we just need to gets things in place here in California – hotel, academy… the final details. With the arrival of Fabio (Gurgel) and Gigi (Paiva) from Brazil, as well as the teachers everywhere else in the world, we’re solid, very motivated and confident.”

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