SEPTEMBER 18, 2021, POZNAN, POLAND, brought forth some of the top European talents for this important stage of the ADCC circuit that is the ADCC European, Middle East, and African Trials, an event that served the purpose of filling out a few of the available vacancies for the big show, the World Championships, held next year. The event featured packed brackets with hundreds of athletes, particularly in the male divisions where some had to go through 6 matches to get the coveted ADCC Finals passport. Below is a small description of each of the Adult Divisions.
A stacked 66-kilogram division saw Welsh grappling star, Ashley Williams dominated with three submissions and one heck of a final match against Russia’s Gairbeg Ibragimov. Although fought at a very high pace, with fun scrambles, submission attempts, guard passes, and more, the match ended up being decided on penalties (2×1).
Another interesting athlete to follow throughout the tournament was Netherlands’ Daniel Groot. Even though he is still a brown belt, Groot showed fantastic skills, submitting his way to the semi-finals where he succumbed to Ibragimov near the final after a clumsy back attack saw him on the wrong end of a mount position with only a few seconds to go.
– Gairbeg Ibragimov def. Daniel Groot via 3×0
– Ashley Williams def. Tuomas Kokkonen via Reverse triangle
– Ashley Williams def. Gairbeg Ibragimov via penalities (0x0 pts)
This was, without a doubt, the toughest division of the tournament. Oliver Taza, Ross Nicholls, Marcus Phelan, Magomed Dzharbaev, to name a few were on the mats, ready to conquer their ticket for the big show, the ADCC Finals next year.
One of the biggest names to take note of from the tournament was Poland’s Mateusz Szczecinski. We had seen Szczecinski (not an easy name to spell but we better start getting the hang of it) back in professional events such as GrappleFest and Polaris, but he still managed to surprise us at the trials with 3 submissions in under 1 minute. He went on to submit one of the trials’ favorites, England’s Ross Nicholls with a straight ankle lock before being stopped by Oliver Taza in the semi-finals by 1 penalty.
Arguably the biggest star of the tournament, John Danaher’s pupil, Oliver Taza, was expected to have an easier path to the top, but nothing was further from the truth. Taza had 6 hard matches for gold, conquering only one of those via submission, 3 won by penalty, and 2 via decision. In the final, Taza met the talented Dagestan prospect Magomed Dzharbaev, an athlete who is mostly seen competing in the UWW grappling circuit, who he managed to overcome via 1 penalty.
– Oliver Taza def. Mateusz Szczecinski via penalty (0x0 pts)
– Magomed Dzharbaev def. Hejraat Rashid via 4×0 pts
– Oliver Taza def. Magomed Dzharbaev via penalty (2×2 pts)
Always a tough division, the 88-kilo weight class was completely dominated by Britain’s Eoghan O’Flanagan, who submitted every single opponent in his way with his infamous inside heel hook. A 5-star performance on many accounts: 5 matches, 5 heel hooks, and only one of his matches going over 5 minutes. Truly impressive athlete to follow.
– Thomas Loubersanes def. Krzysztof Kubit via 3×0 pts
– Eoghan O’Flanagan def. Marcin Maciulewicz via inside heel hook
– Eoghan O’Flanagan def. Thomas Loubersanes via inside heel hook
A solid night for Finland’s Perttu Tepponen. We hadn’t seen the Hilti BJJ representative compete since 2019, but very happy to see this talented super-heavyweight back on the mats.
– Perttu Tepponen def. D. Olszewski via RNC
– Samuel Karas def. J. Stonjek via 4×2 pts
– Perttu Tepponen def. Samuel Karas via 3×0 pts
A repeat final of the 2019 European trials, this time with victory going to the giant from Finland. Neither of these two grapplers looked particularly exciting throughout the tournament but showed a tremendous work rate.
– Heikki Jussila def. Andrzej Iwat via decision (0x0 pts)
– Mateusz Juskowiak def. Benjamin Sehic via 3×0 pts
– Heikki Jussila def. Mateusz Juskowiak via decision (0x0 pts)
A small division won by South Africa’s Peyton. We don’t know a whole lot about Letcher (yet) but she showed great composure and technique. One to follow in the future.
– Ashley Bendle def. E Oberbach
– Peyton Letcher def. D. Herman via 2×0 pts
– Peyton Letcher def. Ashley Bendle via RNC
A somewhat controversial semi-finals match between Holubjakova and Blackman saw the rising teenage talent, London’s Nia Blackman losing the match after the final whistle. Blackman appeared to be winning the match by 2 points up on the scoreboard, but after the match came to an end, two surprise points came up on the scoreboard, and victory was awarded to the Slovakian. Everyone appeared to be somewhat surprised with the turn of events. This episode did not matter in the end as Poland’s Magdalena Loska took the ADCC vacancy with a winning performance in the final against Slavka Holubjakova.
– Magdalena Loska def. Gamila Kanew via decision (0x0 pts)
– Slavka Holubjakova def. Nia Blackman via decision (2×2 pts)
– Magdalena Loska def. Slavka Holubjakova via kneebar