On the 11th of March the University of Warwick BJJ (Brazilian Jiu Jitsu) club travelled to Nottingham University to compete in the annual UKBJJA University League; the biggest event in university BJJ. Hosted at the newly built David Ross Sports Village, the competition saw participation from over 170 competitors from 30 universities to decide ‘the best university grapplers in the country’.
The day opened in the morning with the men’s Gi category. After strong performances from all Warwick competitors, Payam Masarrat and Kai Jun Cheng managed to capture silver medals in their respective categories following some closely fought battles in the finals. Shortly after these successes, experienced Warwick grappler Johannes Hwang snatched a silver medal in his division.
Club veteran Justin Tay experienced his first contest since recently being promoted to purple belt this past Christmas. After some closely contested fights, he advanced to the semi-finals pulling off an astonishing last-second sweep to take the win, securing himself and Warwick one more silver medal. Justin then went on to compete in the absolute division, narrowly missing out on a bronze medal due to suffering an injury.
As the day proceeded Warwick continued to add to their healthy pile of medals. The afternoon witnessed the no-Gi fights take place and our competitors battle through fatigue and exhaustion.
Yasser Saraf and Harry Salles worked their way through the U69kg division demonstrating a vast array of leg locks and chokes, ultimately earning a gold and bronze medal respectively. Johannes was able to earn a bronze medal to add to both his personal collection and Warwick’s overall efforts. Unfortunately, Nasheik Nembhard was disqualified for accidentally reaping his opponents knee in his attempts at a straight foot lock, but continued in the repechage bracket where he managed to submit an opponent with a flying armbar!
Warwick BJJ managed to bring home 7 medals between its 11 fighters this year; a tremendous growth, and one we hope to replicate in the future years to come.
Warwick placed a very commendable 6th out of 30 in the overall standings of the university league table. All Warwick fighters fought valiantly and represented both the club and the university with great pride and excellence. Relative to last year’s solitary bronze medal, Warwick BJJ managed to bring home 7 medals between its 11 fighters this year; a tremendous growth, and one we hope to replicate in the future years to come.
Overall, it was a great day of BJJ and one which all our members enjoyed. Big thanks to Thomas Grandjean and Justin’s mat side guidance and coaching year-round, and to Nottingham for their hospitality and holding another amazing competition.