SEPTEMBER 04, 2021, on the 4th day of action at the Silver Spurs Arena, in Kissimmee, Florida, we finally found out who reached the quarter-finals of the Adult Male Black Belt Divisions, and the finals of the Adult Female Black Belt Divisions.
As expected, this has been a fun, high-level, high-pace tournament, with the biggest concentration of top-level talent this year, thus far. Dare we say the most talent-dense event since the start of the pandemic.
There have been a fair few upsets, but, we would argue, not with as much impact as the open weight victory of middleweight legend Ana Carolina Vieira over the rising super-heavyweight super-star, Gabrieli Pessanha via 4×2 points – albeit, a highly controversial match where Pessanha appeared to have not been given passing points. Pessanha came into the event as a heavy favorite to take home double gold, despite her young age but was stopped by the clever tactics of the experienced GF Team competitor.
Arguably the most impressive athlete of the new generation of grappling talent, in the male category of the tournament thus far, was Fabrício Andrey of Fight Sports. A training partner of Mica Galvão in Manaus, and a student of coach Melqui Galvão, Andrey is a recent black belt whose shown tremendous potential over the past few years as a colored belt. Today he proved his worth again with two submission wins on his way to the quarter-finals of the featherweight division. Two subs against top-tier opposition such as Osvaldo Moizinho (Queixinho) and João Mendes (Bisnaga). Very impressive.
On the female side, Yara Soares continues to overwhelm her opponents, currently going on a 9 match winning streak. The former Guigo student, now with Dream Art, might be on her way to a double gold performance in her first Pan-American experience at black belt, having reached the finals of her weight class (super-heavy) and the absolute. In the open weight class, Yara went through a true “who-is-who” of elite grapplers, taking out Sarah Rice, Nathalie Ribeiro, and Bianca Basílio.
Below are the current tournament standings.
ROOSTERWEIGHT-MALE 1/4 FINALS
LIGHT-FEATHERWEIGHT-MALE 1/4 FINALS
FEATHERWEIGHT-MALE 1/4 FINALS
LIGHTWEIGHT-MALE 1/4 FINALS
MIDDLEWEIGHT-MALE 1/4 FINALS
MEDIUM-HEAVYWEIGHT-MALE 1/4 FINALS
HEAVYWEIGHT-MALE 1/4 FINALS
SUPER-HEAVYWEIGHT-MALE 1/4 FINALS
ULTRA-HEAVYWEIGHT-MALE 1/4 FINALS
OPEN WEIGHT FINAL DECIDED
– Jessa Khan vs Lavinia Barbosa
OPEN WEIGHT FINAL