IBJJF 2014 Worlds Coverage: Day 3 Preview
The Brown and Black Belts are here!
by Josh Sequeira
We hope you have been enjoying our coverage of the IBJJF Worlds. Today we will look over the final brown belt divisions, and take an inside look at the black belt divisions. Enjoy!
Frontrunners: Dillon Danis and Jonathan Satava (Alliance) – In the case of this division, there are two frontrunners. The Marcelo Garcia teammates closed out the division at the Pans and are a cut above
Wild Cards: Darragh O Conaill (Ribeiro JJ) and Christian Broadnax (Nova Uniao) – these two athletes both have unique styles and have long been considered top contenders at brown belt. Look for them to make some noise in a deep division.
Brown Belt Adult Male Medium Heavy
Frontrunner: Manuel Diaz (Caio Terra) – The Pans champ will be in full force and will be tough to beat.
Right behind him: Inacio Neto (Gracie Barra) – finishing second at the Pans to only Diniz, Neto is very good and has a legitimate shot at gold
Wild Cards: Matheus Diniz (Alliance) – this powerhouse, one of Marcelo Garcia’s top students, is an excellent blend of top notch technique, speed and power.
Frontrunner: Tim Spriggs (Team Lloyd Irvin) – the self-proclaimed ‘World’s Best Grappler’ is very physical and combines power with solid technique and timing. He won the Pans and is in line to win his division
Right behind him: Fernando Andrade dos Reis (Alliance) – the Brazilian is successful whenever he steps on the mat, and this year has brought home 5 medals from the Europeans, Pans and Brazilian Nationals alone. If there’s someone who can dethrone the Tim Spriggs train, it might be the Alliance brown belt
Wild Card: Mike Carbullido (Atos) – after medaling at the Pans in a lighter weight class, one of Andre Galvao’s top students looks to test his skills on the Worlds stage at heavyweight. His technique and non-stop pressure will keep him as a dark horse candidate in the division.
Brown Belt Adult Male Super Heavy
Frontrunner: Erberth Santos (Team Lloyd Irvin) – The Brazilian is looking borderline unstoppable at the moment, standing head and shoulders above the opposition. After cruising to double gold at the Pans, barring injury, Santos is aiming for another double gold performance in what could possibly be his final brown belt tournament.
Other names to look out for: Ferrid Kheder (Atos), Manuel Pontes (Gracie Barra), Patrick Welsh (Checkmat)
Brown Belt Adult Male Ultra Heavy
Frontrunner: Pedro Henrique de Souza Moura (Ribeiro JJ) – this year’s Pans winner is definitely the frontrunner to win Worlds Gold, but slipped up recently losing in the divisional final at the Brazilian Nationals to…
Right behind him: Igor Schneider (PSLPB Cicero Costha) – the young brown belt is a winning machine and after beating Moura at the Bazilian Nationals has a very real shot at taking home a Worlds title
Wild Card: Matt Pasquale (Ribeiro JJ) – the Canadian is both accomplished and tough to beat. Pasquale could surprise many in a very thin division
Brown and Black Belt Women
Due to time constraints, and the lack of depth within divisions, it is challenging to preview the women’s divisions for a variety of reasons. In some cases, the divisions have as few as 3 and 4 competitors. With that said, at Grapplers Planet, we are interested in giving credit where it’s due to top notch competitors who put everything on the line and compete at the highest level. Below is a short list of some brown and black belt women who we believe are favourites in their respective divisions and who you definitely should keep an eye out for.
Angelica Galvao (Atos) –Brown Light
Sijara Eubanks (Team Lloyd Irvin) –Brown Medium Heavy
Dominyka Obelenyte (Alliance) – Brown Heavy
Alison Tremblay (BTT) – Brown Super Heavy
Leticia Ribeiro (Gracie Humaita) – Black Light Feather
Michelle Zonato Nicolini (Checkmat) & Mackenzie Dern (Gracie Humaita) – Black Feather
Beatriz Mesquita (Gracie Humaita) & Luiza Monteiro (PSLPB Cicero Costha) – Black Light
Janni Larsson (Checkmat) & Sophia J Drysdale (Zenith) –Black Middle
Luanna Alzuguir (Alliance) & Hannette Staack (Brazil 021) – Black Medium Heavy
Andresa Correa (Alliance) & Tammy Griego (Gracie Barra) – Black Heavy
Gabi Garcia (Alliance) – Black Super Heavy
Adult Male Black Belt Divisions
Frontrunner: Bruno Malfacine (Alliance) – with Caio Terra sitting out due to illness, Malfacine is the clear favourite in this division. With 5 black belt World titles under his belt, he is the man to beat.
Next in line: João Miyao (PSLPB Cicero Costha) – with a dynamic game and relentless attacks from the open guard, dropping down to rooster for the first time at black belt, Miyao has a legit shot at gold
Also in the mix: Milton Bastos (Brasa Caio Terra), Fabbio Passos (Alliance)
Frontrunner: Gui Mendes (Atos) – arguably the most skilled in the division. Despite a disappointing performance in last year’s worlds, after choosing to sit out the Pans this year, Mendes is the man to beat with an exceptional game on bottom or top and excellent finishing ability.
Next in line: Paulo Miyao (PSLPB Cicero Costha) – with a game essentially identical to his brother, Miyao will be a handful for anyone who draws him in the brackets and is a favourite after winning the Pans and Brazilian Nationals as well as taking home a silver in the Europeans, competing at featherweight.
Also in the mix: Gabriel Moraes (Checkmat), Laercio Fernandes (Alliance), Rafael Freitas (Gracie Barra)
Frontrunner: Rafael Mendes (Atos) – the 3 time World champ has only been beaten in the gi once in the last 3 years at last year’s Worlds in the dying seconds of the finals. In the Europeans, San Francisco and Vegas Opens this year, Mendes has demonstrated that he is definitely the kingpin of the featherweights
Next in line: Rubens ‘Cobrinha’ Charles and Mario Reis (Alliance) – the two teammates have 6 Worlds titles and 5 Pans titles between them. If they can beat Mendes, all roads lead to Alliance winning gold
Also in the mix: Gianni Grippo (Alliance), Samir Chantre (Brasa Caio Terra)
Frontrunners: Lucas Lepri and Michael Langhi (Alliance) – the teammates are incredibly tough to beat, with exceptional guards and top notch abilities on top as well. They are favourites to close out together
Next in line: JT Torres (Atos) – a legit threat to win every year, Torres will have his work cut out for him but has the skills and the mindset to be World Champion
Also in the mix: Celso ‘Celesinho’ Venicius (Gracie Elite), DJ Jackson (Team Lloyd Irvin)
Frontrunner: Leandro Lo (PSLPB Cicero Costha) – Lo is a borderline unstoppable force. With an explosive style, relentless passing, and very effective guard, it will be incredibly difficult to beat the Brazilian.
Next in line: Otavio Sousa (Gracie Barra) – the reigning 2 time World Champ, Sousa would be the favourite if not for Lo moving up to middleweight this year. Regardless, his top notch technique and willingness to take a match to any and all positions, Sousa has a legitimate shot at three in a row
Also in the mix: Claudio Calasans (Atos), Victor Estima (Gracie Barra), Clark Gracie (Clark Gracie Team)
Frontrunners: Romulo Barral and Braulio Estima (Gracie Barra) – the teammates closed out last year, and with the experience, accolades and skill, they will do so again as long as they can get by…
Next in line: Guto Campos and Keenan Cornelius (Atos) – the teammates were able to close out the division at the Pans and have an excellent shot at doing so at the Worlds if they can beat Barral and Estima, definitely an attainable goal
Also in the mix: Murilo Santana (Barbosa JJ)
Frontrunner: Andre Galvao (Atos) – moving up in weight most likely to allow Cornelius and Campos the opportunity to close out, Galvao won double gold competing at Ultra Heavy earlier this year. Size and strength will most likely not be an issue with Galvao as he has defeated much larger opponents on a consistent basis
Next in line: Luiz Panza (Barbosa JJ) – after an excellent showing at the Pans, winning gold in the super heavyweight division, Panza has the skills and grit to legitimately win it all
Also in the mix: Lucas Leite and Jackson Sousa (Checkmat), Felipe Pena (Gracie Barra), Rafael Lovato Jr (Ribeiro JJ)
Frontrunner: Rodolfo Viera (GF Team) – moving up to super heavyweight this year, the 4 time world champ will be the man to beat in his new division. With excellent throws, unstoppable passing, and a diverse array of submissions, Viera has the best shot at gold
Next in line: Bernardo Faria and Leo Nogueira (Alliance) – the teammates are both incredibly skilled and accomplished. They
have the best shot at defeating Viera
Also in the mix: Yuri Simoes (Brasa Caio Terra)
Frontrunner: Marcus ‘Buchecha’ Almeida (Checkmat) – the reigning two time double gold Worlds champion does not lose. He is explosive, willing to take risks, fast and aggressive. He can be beat, but it will be incredibly tough.
Next in line: Alexander Trans (Checkmat) – Trans has the skills and the mindset to be World Champion. He has come close but will need to be on top of his game if he wants to overthrow Buchecha
Also in the mix: Rodrigo Cavaca (Zenith), Marcio Corleta (Winner JJ), Roberto ‘Cyborg’ Abreu (Fight Sports)
Day 3 of the IBJJF Worlds is almost upon us. Be sure to check our facebook page and website for details as we bring you up to date coverage of the event! We will continue our previews with a piece on the final day of the Worlds once the black belt divisions establish quarterfinals for Sunday.
Josh Sequeira is a writer and content producer for Grapplers Planet. A blue belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, he is an active competitor and student of the art. He has an Honours BA in English Literature and is working towards a degree in education.