UAE tops overall Jiu-Jitsu rankings at 19th Asian Games

The UAE Jiu-Jitsu National Team has made historic achievements at the 19th Asian Games. The nation’s overall Jiu-Jitsu medal count at the Asian Games 2023 stands at 10 medals, including four gold, three silver, and three bronze. In 2018, the UAE won a total of 9 medals, including 2 gold, 5 silver, and 2 bronze. The team’s participation in the competition was sponsored by Mubadala Investment Company.On Saturday, the final day of the Jiu-Jitsu competitions in Hangzhou, Faisal Al Ketbi and Shamma Al Kalbani claimed gold in their respective categories during the competitions held at Xiaoshan Linpu Gymnasium JJI. Balqees Al Hashemi, Mohammed Al Suwaidi and Khaled Al Balooshi won silver medals, while Shamsa Al Ameri, Mahdi Al Olaqi and Saeed Al Kubaisi earned bronze.His Highness Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Second Deputy Ruler of Dubai and President of the UAE National Olympic Committee (NOC), congratulated the Jiu-Jitsu National Team for their historic achievement. His Highness also commended the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation’s efforts in promoting the sport and creating heroes and heroines who represent the nation in the best way in all sporting events.His Excellency Abdel Moneim Al Hashemi, Chairman of the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation, President of the Asian Jiu-Jitsu Union, and Senior Vice President of the International Jiu-Jitsu Federation, also congratulated the UAE delegation on their great achievement, as he extended the highest expressions of thanks and gratitude for the UAE leadership for their constant support for the sport of Jiu-Jitsu in the country.“I want to appreciate the champions and their families because they made many sacrifices to reach this achievement, and we must know that 4 gold medals out of 10 colored medals did not come from nowhere but are the result of great support from the wise leadership and limitless sacrifices from coaches and players over many years, in camps, tournaments, and training.”His Excellency also extended his gratitude to the National Olympic Committee: “Jiu-litsu provides a successful model and a distinctive experience for UAE sports, as it trusted the sons and daughters of the country, gave them opportunities and support, and is now reaping the fruits.”His Excellency Mohamed Salem Al Dhaheri, Deputy Chairman of the UAEJJF and head of the UAE delegation to the Asian Games, lauded the team, describing them as a 5-star team. He emphasised that the technical staff and players had a clear vision and a deep understanding of the magnitude of their responsibilities. Al Dhaheri also highlighted the remarkable strength and techniques displayed by Emirati players, notably Asma Al Hosani, Shama Al Kalbani, Balqis Al Hashemi, and Shamsa Al Ameri, especially in the face of fierce competition where results remained uncertain until the final moments.Fahad Ali Al Shamsi, Secretary-General of the UAE and Asian Jiu-Jitsu Federations, underlined the strong support from the Asian Federation and the Olympic Council of Asia. He noted the participation of officials from 28 countries and 10 medal-winning nations, underscoring the sport’s global development and strength. Jiu-Jitsu is thriving in countries such as South Korea, the Philippines, Kazakhstan, Thailand, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Mongolia, Singapore, and Uzbekistan. He also expressed appreciation for China’s exceptional organization and successful hosting.In the Men’s -85Kg Final, Faisal Al Ketbi demonstrated his prowess, defeating the Republic of Korea’s Heeseoung Kim by an advantage. This victory marked Al Ketbi’s second gold at the Asian Games, with his first gold achieved in Jakarta in 2018. In the same weight division, the UAE’s Saeed Al Kubaisi secured a bronze medal by defeating Sagdeev Ruslan of Kyrgyzstan in his final match of the day, further bolstering the UAE’s impressive performance.Al Ketbi dedicated the medal to the wise leadership of the UAE. “The country that flew into space and reached the top in many fields deserves to be at the forefront in sports. I am confident that my teammates in the National Team, from the new generations, are capable of continuing their achievements in all categories, boys and girls.”In the Women’s -63Kg Final, Shamma Al Kalbani showcased her exceptional skills by defeating Kira Sung of the Republic of Korea. She secured victory by points. “I was ready to compete for gold in that tournament as of last year, as it was scheduled to be held in 2022, but postponing it for a year gave me a greater opportunity to prepare perfectly, and the Federation, spared no effort in providing us with full support from camps, and internal and external tournaments that brought us to the top of the technical, physical, and mental levels before entering the tournament atmosphere,” Al Kalbani said.

Khaled Alshehi wins gold in jiu-jitsu at Asian Games

The UAE National Jiu-Jitsu Team, sponsored by Mubadala Investment Company, delivered impressive performances at the ongoing 19th edition of the Asian Games in Hangzhou, China, securing four medals, including one gold and three silver, on Thursday, the first day of the jiu-jitsu competitions. During the heated competitions held at the Xiaoshan Linpu Gymnasium JJI, UAE athlete Khaled Alshehi gave a strong start to the team with a gold, while Balqees Abdulla, Mohamed Alsuwaidi, and Khalid Alblooshi took home silver. His Excellency Mohamed Salem Al Dhaheri, Deputy Chairman of the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation and Head of the Mission to China, dedicated the team’s achievement to the UAE’s wise leadership, the people of the Emirates, and all the partners and sponsors of the Federation. He said, “The people of the UAE had high expectations for the team on the first day, and the team put in great effort, especially since the UAE participated with six athletes. The team performed exceptionally well, with four of them reaching the podium in this competitive tournament featuring participation from champions from all across the continent.” Mubarak Al Menhali, Director of the Technical Department at the UAEJJF, expressed that the competitions were as strong as expected. He noted that having four athletes advance to the final matches in three different weight categories indicates that he anticipates the team’s medal count to increase in the next two days.  He added, “the team spared no effort in their preparation for this tournament. We always hold great expectations because we have immense confidence in our players. Regardless of the achievements we attain, we believe there is always room for improvement, and we maintain strong confidence in their ability to earn more medals in the upcoming days.” The Men -62Kg division saw an all-Emirati final where Khaled Alshehi and Khalid Alblooshi faced off, with Alshehi winning the gold. “After securing the gold at the Asian Championship this year, I made a promise that I would win the gold at the Asian Games. I am glad to have fulfilled my promise, and I will not cease training or rest until I achieve gold at the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship next November.” “It is truly an unforgettable moment in my life, filled with overwhelming joy. Tears welled up in my eyes because I had longed for this moment for a long time. I thank God that I have finally reached it. We must always cherish this moment, representing the flag of the country that has given us so much, placing it above all else,” he said. Khalid Alblooshi, the silver medalist in the 62 kg weight category, also credited the UAEJJF for his performance today. He said, “The programmes initiated by the Federation for spreading and developing the sport and creating champions have led to the results we witnessed today. I am proud of today’s achievement, especially since in the final, I competed against my own teammate, Khaled Al Shehhi. When it’s an all-Emirati final, the UAE is the biggest winner.” The fourth medal, a silver, was earned by Balqees Abdulla, who faced Filipino Margarita Ochoa in the 48 kg final. She said, “I had hoped to win the gold, but it was a tough fight, and my opponent was a black belt holder with far more experience on the mat. Nevertheless, it was a valuable experience and has provided me with many lessons that I can carry forward and apply to my performance in upcoming tournaments.”

Commando group emmerge as winners in the finals of Abu Dhabi grand slam

Commando Group emerged victorious on the final day of the final leg of the highly anticipated Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Jiu-Jitsu World Tour 2022-2023 (ADGS - Abu Dhabi) at Mubadala Arena in Zayed Sports City. The competitions for the professional division saw fierce fights from top-notch athletes from around the world, making for an exciting spectacle. In a spectacular display of skill, Commando Group showcased their prowess on the mats, clinching first place in the professional category and cementing their position as one of the top jiu-jitsu clubs in the world. A.F.N.T. put up a strong fight and secured second place, while Baniyas took third place. The closing day marked the end of the ADGS 2022-2023 season, and the top players in the black belt division, who performed admirably throughout the season and earned the highest rankings were honored in a grand ceremony. The list of women winners includes Brazilians Diana Teixeira (49 kg), Ana Rodriguez (55 kg), Julia Alves (62 kg), Izadora Silva (70 kg), and Gabrieli Pessanha (95 kg).

Zayed Al Khathiri sets for a gold in Abu Dhabi grand slam final

Dubai: : History-maker Zayed Al Kathiri will take to the mat at the Mubadala Arena in Abu Dhabi this weekend hoping to secure another black belt gold medal to accompany the one he claimed in the UAE capital last November.The 23-year-old is one of the UAE’s most promising jiu-jitsu stars and will be a hot favourite going into the final leg of the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam World Tour from Friday to Sunday. At the World ProAbu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship held in the emirate last year, Kathiri defeated Brazilian Nathannael Fernandes in an intense final to become the first Emirati black belt to win gold on such a stage.With his explosive fighting style combining powerful takedowns, lightning-fast submissions, and aggressive technique, Al Kathiri has quickly made a name for himself in the jiu-jitsu world. Winning numerous titles at both national and international level, including multiple golds across multiple belt categories at the Abu Dhabi World Pro and various AJP Tour events.As the final Abu Dhabi Grand Slam weekend draws near, Al Kathiri – ranked No.1 among black belt professionals competing in the 56kg category – is looking forward to showcasing his skills once more – and fully expects to add another prestigious title to his already impressive haul. “I have trained extensively for this final round and am confident I will win. I’ve already achieved gold medals for all belt colours and am prepared for any challenge that comes my way. Winning gold with my black belt will be amazing.“I believe I’m capable of performing well in all the different positions and chapters of jiu-jitsu, including stand-up fighting, passing, and playing guard. This flexibility allows me to adapt to different strategies and tactics in a fight.”Competing under the UAE flag, Al Kathiri’s win at last year’s Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship World Pro is serving as inspiration as he prepares for his latest challenge. “Fighting while representing the values of the UAE is a source of great motivation for me,” he said. “I feel incredibly happy and proud to be the first Emirati black belt to win a medal at the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu ChampionshipWorld Pro.”As a full-time jiu-jitsu athlete, Al Kathiri serves as a role model for young Emiratis and is devoted to promoting the UAE’s national’s sport, inspiring others to pursue it. “In order to succeed in this sport, it takes hard work, dedication, resilience, and sacrifice. There are no shortcuts,” he said. “You also need support, so I would like to thank my coaches, teammates, and fans who have helped me along the way. Without them, I would not be here.”Those fans can eagerly anticipate Al Kathiri’s performance this weekend. With his impressive record, talent and newfound experience, he will be sure to try to put on a spectacular show, cementing his status as one of the sport’s top practitioners.

UAE national jiu-jitsu team grabs gold

Dubai: The UAE National Jiu-Jitsu Team, sponsored by Mubadala Investment Company, got off to an impressive start on day one of the Grand Prix Paris Open 2023, securing six medals, including two golds, at the event organised by the Jiu-Jitsu International Federation.Khaled Al Shehhi and Omar Al Suwaidi shone for the UAE by winning gold in the 62 kg and 56 kg categories respectively. They were joined by Muhammad Ali Al-Suwaidi and Theyab Al-Nuaimi who won silver medals in the 69 kg and 56 kg categories while Shamma Al Kalbani and Sultan Jabr added to the UAE's medal tally by winning bronze medals in the 63 kg and 69 kg categories.The UAE team’s impressive start puts them in a strong position going into the second day of the event, which features over 250 male and female players from 22 countries.Commenting on the UAE national team’s performance, Mubarak Al Menhali, Director of the Technical Department at the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation, praised the team’s excellent performance on Saturday and their ability to execute the plans and tactics developed with the technical staff, reflecting the country's leadership in the sport.“The players of the national team showed great physical and mental presence during the competitions. They were able to outperform a group of experienced international players, reflecting their keenness and responsibility to continue their path of achievements. This path was started this year with their victory in the last Asian Championship held in Bangkok, Thailand in February,” Al Menhali added.According to Al Menhali, all male and female national team players displayed a high performance level and most of them achieved a place on the podium. He noted that there is still an opportunity to increase the team's number of medals, as some champions will compete on the second day.According to Ramon Lemos, the coach of the UAE national jiu-jitsu team, their strategy for international tournaments, such as the Grand Prix Paris Open, involves optimal preparation and engagement with elite players, which is crucial for their participation in upcoming events like the World Championships in Mongolia and the Asian Games in China.“I am very pleased with the performance of the players on the first day of the competition. Although we missed out on two gold medals due to some minor issues, these tournaments are crucial in enhancing our players’ abilities and improving their focus when competing against experienced opponents, enabling us to press and subjugate them effectively.”Omar Al Suwaidi, who achieved the 56 kg gold medal, said: “I am happy to achieve the gold medal and raise the UAE’s flag on the podium. The reason behind this achievement is the continuous work, systematic training and unlimited support from the wise leadership. There is no doubt that this victory will motivate us to provide more and follow the mentality of winning in the upcoming tournaments, and solidify UAE’s global dominance in the sport in this sport.”Khaled Al-Shehhi, who won the 62 kg gold medal, attributed his success to teamwork, team spirit, and the great efforts made by the federation and the technical staff in qualifying, training, and providing camps to enhance the desired levels.He added, “We have many important upcoming events, including the Abu Dhabi Grand Slam Jiu-Jitsu World Tour, the World Championship, and other significant competitions. Today's achievements will undoubtedly motivate us to perform well, and we are preparing rigorously to compete on multiple levels.”Tariq Al Fahaam

UAE jiu-jitsu team gearing up for Asian championships in Thailand

The UAE national jiu-jitsu team, sponsored by Mubadala Investment Company, is stepping up preparations ahead of the seventh Jiu-Jitsu Asian Championships, scheduled to kick off on February 24 in Bangkok with the participation of 37 countries. The squad, currently ensconced in a training camp in Sydney, has entered the crucial final stage of preparations.The players, overseen by technical staff from the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation (UAEJJF) and led by coach Ramon Lemos, train twice a day, in the morning and the evening, to improve their physical and technical abilities, attention levels, and knowledge of different combat techniques.Mubarak Al Menhali, Director of the UAEJJF’s Technical Department, said: “The camp in Australia is the team’s last practice before they depart for Thailand to compete in the Asian Championship. This is crucial for the team as it enhances the players’ technical, physical, and mental abilities and is one of the most important and critical elements in helping the team get ready to win the continental title.”In turn, Ramon Lemos, coach of the national jiu-jitsu team, expressed confidence about the team’s performance. “The final training session was productive, accomplished its objectives, and showed an improvement in the technical, tactical, and physical levels. We’re putting a lot of emphasis on strengthening the workouts in the next days to improve the technical and skill components and build physical fitness,” he said.Elsewhere, Shamma Al-Kalbani, the national team member, said: “Our preparations are progressing as planned, and we're working to put all the instructions the coaching team gives into practice so that we can overcome obstacles and keep winning titles.”The men’s national team delegation includes Theyab Al-Nuaimi and Omar Al-Suwaidi (56 kg), Omar Al-Fadhli and Khaled Al-Shehhi (62 kg), Muhammad Al-Suwaidi, Sultan Jabr and Faraj Al-Awlaki (69 kg), and Mahdi Al-Awlaki (77 kg), Saeed Al-Kubaisi and Faisal Al-Ketbi weighed (85 kg), and Abdullah Al-Kubaisi and Hazza Farhan weighed (94 kg).The women's team includes Hamda Al Shekheili and Aisha Al Shamsi (45 kg), Balqis Abdul Karim and Hessa Al Shamsi (48 kg), Asma Al Hosani and Shamsa Al Ameri (52 kg), Bashayer Al Matroushi (57 kg), and Haya Al-Jahuri and Shamma Al-Kalbani weighed (63 kg), and Marwa Al-Hosani weighed (70 kg).