Report and Photos By Hywel Teague
Some of the most dramatic matches in ADCC history took place today at the 2015 Submission Wrestling World Championships. Blood was shed and tears were spilled in a serious of thrilling matches that featured some of the best grapplers on the planet.
Mackenzie Dern added another big tournament win to her 2015 resume with her first ADCC title. She shrugged off a number of creative submission attacks from Michelle Nicolini in one of the most even and back-and-forth matches of the day. The scoreboard was even at 4-4 but Nicoini had suffered a penalty for inactivity, giving Dern the win in the -60kg female division.
Ana Laura Cordeiro outpointed her opponents Jessica Oliviera and Amanda Santana on her way to the +60kg division gold. Favorite Gabi Garcia ended up with bronze after falling to silver medalist Oliviera in a semi-final upset.
In the 66kg division, Rubens Cobrinha Charles captured gold with a decisive 3-0 win over Bruno Frazatto. The Alliance star showed an anaconda-like back control giving Frazatto no chance to escape. At 36 years of age Charles claimed his second consecutive ADCC win, repeating his 2013 success. Augusto Tanquinho Mendes scored third place with a toe hold submission of Eddie Bravo s student Geo Martinez.
COMPLETE RESULTS: 2015 ADCC
Davi Ramos wowed the crowd with two big submission wins to capture the 77kg title. Making his ADCC debut in style, Ramos showed a nearly untouchable blend of solid wrestling skills and razor sharp submissions. He submitted Gilbert Durinho Burns with a rear naked choke in the semis before shockingly armbarring Alliance s Lucas Lepri. Ramos jumped over the guard of Lepri, locking in an armbar before he had even hit the mat. Durinho would outpoint Gracie Barra s Otavio Sousa 6-0 for bronze.
With almost half a dozen meetings in competition in the last year or so, Yuri Simoes and Keenan Cornelius are no strangers to each other s jiu-jitsu. Simoes seems to have figured out the perfect strategy for Cornelius, using his dynamic wrestling and positional control to avoid and shut down the ATOS youngster's vaunted guard game. Simoes outpointed Romulo Barral, considered a favorite for the title, in the semi finals 3-0. Barral would also lose to Russian Rustam Chsiev in a disappointing match where only penalty points were awarded.
The 99kg final resulted in an epic war between GFTeam s Rodolfo Vieira and Gracie Barra s Felipe Pena. Preguica was fighting up a weight class from his usual category, while Vieira has the advantage of being bigger, stronger and faster. The physical difference came into play early as Vieira manhandled Pena, taking him down, getting his back and passing to mount. As all this occurred before points were valid, they fought through to a 0-0 decision win after double over-time. Pena s gas tank allowed him to remain competitive to the end, although Roldofo s stronger stand-up game and early dominance sealed the win in his favor. Joao Assis earned automatic third place as Xande Ribeiro was unable to fight due to injury.
DAY 1 RECAP: Favorites Steamroll Competition
In the first time in ADCC history there was an all-American final as Orlando Sanchez met countryman Jared Dopp in the +99kg division. The tree-trunk like Sanchez showed an excellent strategy, combining aggressive wrestling with tight top control to cruise to a decision after double over-time. Sanchez repeatedly slammed Dopp, launching him with a series of picture-perfect suplexes, yet failed to win points as ADCC rules require a subsequent three seconds of ground control to score. Vinny Magalhaes exploited one of Joao Gabriel Rocha s few weaknesses by catching the 24-year-old with a heel hook for bronze.
Superfight: Galvao Outworks Sluggish Cyborg
Andre Galvao was firing on all cylinders ins his superfight with Roberto Cyborg Abreu. Coming in at a reported 96kg, the ATOS team co-founder repeatedly took down Cyborg and threatened with a series of chokes. Cyborg struggled to get out of first gear and only managed to perform a no-point reversal late in the match. Galvao cruised to victory with a dominant 5-0 win, making him a four-time ADCC champion (2011 weight and absolute, 2013 and 2015 superfight winner).
Calasans Wins Absolute in Marathon Run to Gold
As expected, the absolute division provided plenty of excitement and drama.
Claudio Calasans emerged as the unexpected winner after a series of tough matches against mostly heavier opponents. Calasans showed a workmanlike and gritty performance in winning decisions over +99kg grapplers Gabriel Lucas and Vinny Magalhaes in the first two matches, fellow 88kg contestant Yuri Simoes in the semi final, and finally the 105kg Joao Gabriel Rocha in a 40-minute double OT final.
As winner of the absolute, Calasans will meet reigning superfight champion Andre Galvao in 2017. Complicating matters is the personal history between the two champions - hailing from the same home town, the team mates have been close friends since childhood. On whether this affects the proposed contest, both men replied in the negative.
We have to fight! said Calasans with a smile and a shrug, while Galvao joked, For the $40,000 prize money, I d fight my own grandmother!
Early absolute division matches included Rodolfo Vieira beating UFC stalwart Ben Henderson by triangle choke, Vagner Rocha outpointing Romulo Barral 2-0, and a controversial match between Yuri Simoes and Dean Lister which the American was heard to describe as his most blatant robbery.
PHOTOS: ADCC 2015 - Day 2
Highlights of the Day
Davi Ramos was a dark horse to win the 77kg division and his lightning fast armbar of Lucas Lepri was one of the highlights of the entire weekend.
Orlando Sanchez has been working with wrestling coach Jacob Harman, and the results were on display in his gold medal winning performance against Jared Dopp as he pounded the Oklahoma native into the mat with a series of thunderous suplexes.
Rodolfo Vieira vs Felipe Pena, 99kg final. The Brazilian superstars put on one of the most dynamic and hotly contested matches of the day with this 40-minute war. Rodolfo s early onslaught, Pena s staying power and late comeback All the makings of a modern classic.
ADCC Day 2: Drama, Drama and More Drama!
Report and Photos By Hywel Teague