Members of the Baniyas Jiu-Jitsu team celebrate with the trophy.
Gulf Today, Staff Reporter
The final leg of the season’s prestigious Jiu-Jitsu President’s Cup tournament culminated on Sunday with high-intensity competition among local champions in the adult category.
Baniyas Club dominated both the Men’s and Women’s divisions on a spectacular evening filled with excitement both on and off the mats at Abu Dhabi’s Jiu Jitsu Arena.
Al Wahda bagged second place in the hotly contested Men’s category, while Al Ain stood third.
Al Wahda and Sharjah Self-Defense Sports Club finished second and third respectively in the women’s category. With fans, friends, and families filling the viewers’ stand to show support, the two-day curtain-closing round of an event that in previous weekends featured Under-16 and Under-18 competitors proved a huge success.
A coronation ceremony for the winners was held on Saturday night in the presence of Hazza Bin Khalifa Bin Shakhbut Al Nahyan. Abdel Moneim Al Hashemi, Chairman of the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation, President of the Ju-Jitsu Asian Union, and senior vice president of the International Jiu-Jitsu Federation honored the teams that secured first three places.
Hashemi congratulated the champions and complimented the local clubs and academies for their commitment to supporting the Federation’s strategy to discover and promote new talents.
“The new competition structure, which separates competitors into Under-16s, Under-18s, and Adults has proven to be a gamechanger,” he said.
“It provided an opportunity for the players to shine, and the team’s technical staff will have drawn great insights into their players.
“The dazzling performance we saw over the past three weeks indicates how far our athletes have progressed and how well they are prepared for the upcoming competitions.”
Fahad Al Shamsi, secretary-general of the UAEJJF, added: “The President’s Cup has seen incredible success in the past three weeks and this event has established a strong platform for all jiu-jitsu enthusiasts across the Emirates.
“The tournament was a big success this year, with more clubs, academies, and players participating than ever before. We’ve seen a rise too in the number of families and parents encouraging their children to join in this sport, which shows more people are grasping its many benefits. “
Elsewhere, Baniyas’s Maitha Shreim could barely hide her delight at her team’s achievement. “Honestly, winning the championship was an incomparable feeling,” she said.
Men’s counterpart Zayed Al Kathiri added: “I thank all my colleagues who worked hard to make the most valuable and priceless efforts to defend the title. I’d like to also thank the club’s management for their assistance in providing such great technical and training equipment, which has helped us improve on every step of this journey. “
Mohamed Salem Al Dhaheri, vice president of the UAEJJF, Brigadier Nasser Khadem Al Kaabi, vice chairman of the board of directors of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, Brigadier Mohammed Bin Dalmouj Al Dhaheri, board member of the UAEJJF, Humaid Mohammed Bulahij Al Rumaithi, chairman of the Baniyas Sports Club Company, and Khalid Al Hinai, chief operating officer of the Al Wahda Club were also all present during the coronation ceremony.