The International Masters and Seniors is coming up July 22, aiming the spotlight on the great competitors of Jiu-Jitsu past. Alexandre “Gigi” Paiva is one of them. Since his day wowing the crowd in the adult dispute, he went on to become a marked presence in the veteran competition.
“When I compete I always go in to win, there’s no other way. But there’s something different about the International Masters: being able to see a gang that’s been competing for a long time. So there’s nostalgia to it. There’s still the desire to compete and win, but we see folks who had disappeared competing again and that’s really cool. And folks go there to watch those people,” he remarks to GRACIEMAG.com.
“It’s the desire to compete, the adrenaline. We think, ‘shoot, I don’t think I’m going to compete anymore. But once the competition’s over there’s the desire to compete again the very next week. It’s that desire to overcome, to test one’s self, to push the limits and get in shape. There are several factors that make us compete. I look to participate in other sports, like Hawaiian canoeing, among others. I do several activities, but Jiu-Jitsu’s my home.”
Gigi will compete at middleweight, but he prefers to keep the age group he will be in a mystery. There may be a surprise lurking there.
“I don’t know if I’m going in as a senior 1, senior 2 or even a master. I have yet to decide.”
Only one thing is certain: Alliance will go in with a strong team to try and dethrone Gracie Humaitá, which has been dominating the competition.
“The team is really big, with a contingent from Rio, São Paulo and all over the world. We’ve won this title before, but Gracie Humatá took it and doesn’t want to give it back. But this year we’re going to try and get it back. We’ll see!” he says in finishing.