As previously reported by GRACIEMAG.com, brothers Rafael and Guilherme Mendes took off for Japan, where the Rickson Cup took place this Saturday. The duo comments on how things went in Kawasaki:
“We just got back from the championship, it was great! The organization was first rate and thank God everything went well, according to plan!” recounts Rafael, with Guilherme filling in:
“Rafael scored 12 to 0 before finishing from back mount in his first match; I scored 8 to 0 before finishing with a choke from a guard pass in my first match, also against a local fighter. In the semifinal, Rafael got another choke from back mount, from a positions we’ve been practicing a lot in the academy, and I beat Shane Rice by 8 to 2. I passed guard and took his back, but he defended well and escaped.”
The trip to Japan was no easy one, but it was all worthwhile. Besides overcoming their respective opponents, Rafael and Guilherme, as is apparent in the photos, are treated like true celebrities by Jiu-Jitsu lovers in the Land of the Rising Sun.
“We’re really pleased because we got in last night, we could hardly sleep and we still had excellent matches. We always compete looking to innovate, to come up with new positions, and try to create moves that will surprise people. It worked out yet again!” says Guilherme.
“We were really happy with this win, especially for the honor of fighting in Japan. The affection and respect the people of Japan have for fighters always makes us want to come back. As soon as we get back to Brazil we’ll start training for the European Open. Guto Campos is already in Rio Claro for that. Finally, we can’t leave out our thanks for the guys at the gym who help us so much. We believe our wins don’t just come down to the work we do, but their work too. Thanks Durinho, Frazatto, Calasans, Ronaldinho, Ed, Denison, Lazaro, Ferrugem, Walker, and Thiago Mendes, our physical conditioning coach. We can hardly wait to get back and train all together again!” says Rafael in finishing.