ABU DHABI: For a third successive year, Abu Dhabi will host the Jiu-Jitsu World Championship, with an estimated 2,000 male and female competitors from more than 70 countries set to take part.
Organized by the Jiu-Jitsu International Federation, the global body for the sport, and hosted by the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation, the event will run from Oct. 29 to Nov. 8 at the Jiu-Jitsu Arena in Zayed Sports City. Drawing the world’s best competitors across various age groups, the 11-day event is expected to attract both male and female talents of all ages, competing across four categories: Adult, Under 21, Under 18, and Under 16.
“The decision of the JJIF to entrust us once more with this prestigious global event demonstrates their unwavering faith in Abu Dhabi’s capabilities to successfully host sports events,” said Mohammed Salem Al-Dhaheri, vice chairman of the UAEJJF. “It sees the emirate as a model platform for planning and holding the most important tournaments. The fact that the city will host the Jiu-Jitsu World Championship for a third consecutive edition demonstrates not only this trust, but also the success of previous iterations.
“The UAE and Abu Dhabi continue to be crucial to the growth of jiu-jitsu on a global scale and we are working constantly to encourage international organizations to further promote the sport. As the home city of both the Asian and International Jiu-Jitsu Federation headquarters, we strive to improve cooperation with other federations too.”
While participants are expected to fly into Abu Dhabi from over 70 countries, Al-Dhaheri said the UAE national team has already started its preparations.
“Our athletes are determined to defend their championship title and build on their previous successes, particularly their recent performance at the World Games where they won a historic five medals.”
The UAEJJF recently approved the national team’s pre-tournament plans, including setting up internal and external preparation camps. The men’s squad includes Faisal Al-Ketbi, Omar Al-Fadhli, Mohammed Al-Omari, Mohammed Al-Suwaidi, Mahdi Al-Awlaki, Khaled Al-Shehhi and Diab Al-Nuaimi, among others. The women’s team includes Hamda Al-Shukaili, Balqis Al-Hashimi, Shamma Al-Kalbani, Bashayer Al-Matrooshi, Mira Al-Saadi, Amna Al-Hosani, Zamzam Al-Hammadi and Mahra Mahfouz.
The UAE national team retained the winners’ title at last year’s Jiu-Jitsu World Championship. The country won 53 medals overall, including 18 gold, 16 silver and 19 bronze.