Monday, March 8, 2010

Moderate Success at Abu Dhabi Pro Trials in Canada

Montreal is like a sub par NYC combined with a sub par Paris where the subparredness is squared. I am not so much a fan. Except for the noodle place. You can pick your own type of Asian noodles, any Asian sauce, any meat, and choose all your favorite vegetables for some amazing stir-fry. We went twice in as many days. Lol!

It was actually the first time Ryan and I have traveled together for a tournament believe it or not. It used to be that we were never able to leave at the same time but my new job is more flexible which is nice.

Anyhow, the tournament went pretty well for the most part. Not surprisingly, Jake walked through most of the competition in the Men's Purple-Black division to earn the gold and a free trip to compete in Abu Dhabi. Congrats, Jake! His buddy Josh who is a blue belt manhandled people all day placing first in his division then second in the absolute (just narrowly missing a free trip to Abu Dhabi but he showed a lot of heart, determination, and skill all the way through tons of matches).

As for me, I was lucky I guess to have a bye first round, but that sometimes makes me nervous because I haven't had a match to warm up in yet. Luckily Ryan spent a lot of time warming up with me though and things went well. The weight class was 138.5 (and I weighed in at 113 with all my clothes on - jeans, belt, and all, lol) so I was definitely the smallest but happy that the first girl wasn't outrageously bigger - maybe only 10 or 15 lbs. I was able to secure the take down and after a long fought match able to get the choke in the last second of the match. Then I had a very long wait for the next match (2 hours maybe) so I had time to rest but almost too much time because I had to warm-up again before the second match.

The second match (semi-finals) was against a girl who had to cut some weight to make it, so I knew I had to push the pace in order to ensure that I wouldn't be too tired if I made it to the last round. I jumped for an armlock early on, but I wasn't able to secure it. Then while going for a gi brabo, I was able to snatch a triangle then armbar from the bottom to finish. In the finals I was up against Sheila Bird, a long time black belt in Canada. I was ready to fight but knew she was a good wrestler. Stupidly I let up on a single leg attempt in the beginning due to a hesitation (my wrestling coach will be unhappy with me) and I would have had it had I gone in hard expecting to be successful. I won't make that mistake again. That turned out to be my only chance as she took me down, she landed in top of North-South with her grip already on for a shoulder lock. I tried to recover an upside-down guard but really with someone that much bigger and stronger and more experienced, if she doesn't make a mistake, it's tough to recover. Not ready to give up, I decided to try to turn out and was immediately wrenched into a kimura to which I tapped as quickly as possible - but not before something in my shoulder cracked. (I was worried yesterday but thank God, today it feels better and doesn't appear to be significantly injured.)

It's super frustrating to lose that way. Mostly because I feel like I was having a pretty good day overall and due to a hesitation on my part, missed out on the only opportunity that was presented to me during that specific match. Next time, I definitely need to be more insistent to play my own game and dictate the pace of the match.

Well, it was a learning experience for me and while second place doesn't earn a free trip to Abu Dhabi, it isn't half bad considering I was the smallest there. I am happy about one thing though, because I didn't have any issue with my lungs holding up and since that is a major concern for me, it's a big victory each time I have manage to keep my asthma under control. Three tournaments in a row now that I haven't had an issue! (Knock on wood!)


  1. Despite the loss at the end, sounds like you did well! I have problems with hesitation in take-downs as well. To me, that is the scariest part of tournaments.

  2. Congrats on your performance! That's awesome :).


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