SENI 05 report

It’s hard to believe that a year has passed since the highly successful SENI 04 weekend and that once again the UK’s martial arts movers and shakers would be displaying their wares to martial artists and general public alike.It’s hard to believe that a year has passed since the highly successful SENI 04 weekend and that once again the UK’s martial arts movers and shakers would be displaying their wares to martial artists and general public alike. Moving on from last year’s event, the Gracie Invitational was held inside the main exhibition arena and more to the point, tucked away in a corner, somewhat like an afterthought. The event the year before had its own massive hangar sized arena, resplendent with bleachers either side of the mats and made for a great day’s spectating – not so this year. Being tucked in to a corner, over 350 entrants had to jockey for seating arrangements with spectators, friends and family alike on only two sides that were at best a joke and had the added hassle of having insufficient storage space for training bags and an ever present menace of jumped up officialdom on permanent bag watching and confiscating duties, hardly the best prep for any fighter.

When asked about this situation, the GI organisers informed me that their hands were tied and that the SENI organisers had made drastic changes to space allocation, resulting in the above and to give the guys credit, four mat areas were in action throughout the day in a bid to get through all the fights. Referees included Marc Walder, Braulio Estima, Escorrega, Felipe Jerry, Andy Roberts and Eddie Kone (apologies if I missed anyone out!) who worked flat out all day without so much as a break.

As ever the white belts were first out onto the green and yellow mats and there was action on every mat, submissions coming thick and fast; GB Bradford Sacha King stood out from the crowd in his weight division picking up the gold medal with a nice display of technique and finishing skills. The GBUK team were out in force as were the Carlson Gracie Team which included a tough contingent of fighters from their Budapest camp, who walked away with five gold medals and one silver. This haul may have been larger had a larger number of scheduled fighters not dropped out of the event through injuries and personal commitments, which paved the way for the Roger Gracie Academy to take the first place in the team medals.

Newly formed GB Bristol academy had a good day with one gold, two silver and one bronze and Chris ‘The Squid’ Brown from Oldham Martial Arts Centre gave the crowd a shock, choking out his opponent cold with a wicked collar choke en route to silver in his division. Chris did not feel the guy go out and he didn’t tap to the technique so Brown carried on with the choke and by the time the ref stepped in, his opponent was flat out. The St John’s ambulance guys were over in a flash and after a bit of flapping by a number of concerned onlookers, his opponent was back awake and walked off the mats unaided. Once again, the mighty Chris Crossan was on form and walked away with the gold medal in the blue belt division – someone promote the guy and give the blue belts a break next year!

Unfortunately, by the time the purple belts were on the mats, I was on my way back to Manchester, due to cadging a lift down to the event and missed the best fights of the day – maybe in future events, the purples can start first, as their numbers aren’t as large as the whites and blues.

Being in the main room gave me a chance to have a look around and it was nice to meet Ian Freeman and Rob Hewitt for a quick chat and photo, as they were promoting their new MMA magazine Fighters Only, as was Malcolm Martin and co who were busy promoting the new look Fighters magazine. Andy Smith of Evolution Fightwear was hard at it, flogging his wares all day and highlight of the day was the announcement of a world record attempt of one fingered push ups……on a coconut. People beware; this had to be seen to be believed.

As ever, there were the usual iffy reffing decisions and accusations of sandbagging were bandied about the internet post event, but the competition drew in the biggest list of competitors ever for a UK event and it looks like the venue will be changing to accommodate next year’s anticipated deluge of fighters, which I, for one am pleased about, after suffering first hand from the bag watching militia and their cohorts’ continual haranguing, as I was trying to get through to matside to take some shots. You will not be missed.

To everyone who fought on the day, you guys are the stars of the day; like the old cliché says, everyone’s a winner for having the guts to step up and fight and the public were given another fine display of sportsmanship and quality BJJ and that’s all one can ask for.

See you on the mats!

Team Results, using 3 for gold, 2 for silver, 1 for bronze

RGA = 1stGB Birmingham = 2ndMaster = 3rd

adult feather whitegold – paul janew – GB Birmingham silver – Barry Wilson – St Helens BJJbronze – nathan – GB Birmingham

adult heavy whitegold – tony passos – bttsilver – david long – gb bristolbronze – richard quinn – GB Essex

adult light whitegold – cedric akapovi – GB Birminghamsilver – dean pearson – RGAbronze – Yousuf Nabi – Gordo

adult m heavy whitegold – daniel Thomas – mastersilver – yohan les cure – masterbronze lukas szymanski – liverpool BJJ

adult middle whitegold – petar pecija – carlson gracie budapestsilver – Kassan Hipkiss – pkmyBronze – Scott Pickering – Wolfslair

adult super feather whiteGold – sacha king – GB Bradfordsilver -vishal patel – GB Milton Keynesbronze – stuart wilkinson – wolfslair

adult super heavy whitegold – john law – RGAsilver – david allinson – De SouzaBronze – Mark Long GB Bristol/Ozan Anmet RGA

adult super super heavy whitegold – theo theodoulou – master silver – mark bottom – GB SheffieldBronze –

master feather whitegold – james smart – GB Bristolsilver – Fasal Rahman BTTBronze – Dominic Szikora Master

master heavy whitegold – steve gilbertson – master sunderlandsilver – robert beck – carlson gracie budapestbronze – brian paul – RGDA

master light whitegold – Magek – Carlson Gracie Londonsilver – Scott McKail – GB Edinburghbronze – Phillip Paisley – GB Swansea

master m heavy whitegold simon phillips SDCS ExeterSilver – Ian Ball bolton bjjBronze – Sean Ryan GB Channel Islands

master middle whiteGold Chris Shakira GB BirminghamSilver – Gary King GB BristolBronze – George Newall GB Milton Keynes

master super heavy bluegold – james o’gormansilver – peter mcfadden

master super super heavy bluegold – vic scott – sbgsilver – steve foster – tony bebbington JJbronze – aldo di giorgi – GB Newcastle

adult feather bluegold – neil croston Bolton BJJsilver – alan edmondson – masterbronze – kevin capel RGA

adult heavy bluegold – Cory Smith – GB Birminghamsilver – Bulent Bingol – De SouzaBronze – Nicholas Jones – GB Swansea

adult m heavy bluegold – kevin webb – GB Birminghamsilver – Dod Granville – University of YrkBronze – Ricky Turner – GB Essex

adult middle bluegold – Ste Dwason RGASilver – Robby du Toit RGAbronze – mathew sellars GB Bristol

adult rooster bluegold – ian malone GB NewcastleSilver – Spencer Hewitt GB Essex

adult blue super feathergold – Chris RGASilver – Leo Aguilar RGABronze – Perry Deiley

adult super heavy bluegold – gabor fodor Carlson Gracie BudapestSilver – dave fowler GB EssexBronze – Michael Quanlivan RGDA

adult super super heavy bluegold – Chris Crossan – GB Stocktonsilver – Stephen Williams BTTbronze – Marc Goddard – GB birmingham

master feather blueGold – nick brooks RGASilver – Chris Brown TMAA Bronze – Javed Uddin RGA/Ebe Ghansah GB MK

master heavy bluegold – Istan Vasas Carlson Gracie Budapestsilver – russell Callaghanbronze – Sam Howey Master Sunderland

master light bluegold – Chiu Kwong GB Birminghamsilver – Stephen Keen BTTbronze – Tony Devine GB Bradford

master m heavy bluegold – steve finan RGAsilver – rob stevens GB Birminghambronze – Steve Brand GB Essex

master middle bluegold – leszek Chybowski Carlson Londonsilver – Brian Hurley RGAbronze – Paul Rowland Rga

master super heavy bluegold – alan McCune – GB Edinburghsilver – Chris Watts – GB Milton Keynesbronze – Rashid Mekhalfia – RGA

purple over 76kgGold – Henrique Santana Carlson LondonSilver – Helio Pereira RGABronze – Dickie Martin

purple under 76kgGold – Felipe Almeida MasterSilver – Varqa Abyaneh SBGBronze – james duncalf BTT

adult female blue opengold – caoimhe mcgill gb belfastsilver – carol fan SBG

adult female white openGold – Anna Mayne SBGsilver – Beaua Ali RGAbronze – Hannah Clarke Mo Teague

juvenilesRoostergold – tyrone elliott GB NewcastleSilver – Dean Searle – De Souza

Feathergold – Mikel Ghansah – GB Milton KeynesSilver – Morton Hopkinson – Mansfield ConstrictorsBronze – Lawson Tennant – Mansfield Constrictors

Above 70kggold – luke young – SBGsilver – anthony griffin – Tony Bebbington JJ

Team Results, using 3 for gold, 2 for silver, 1 for bronze

RGA = 1stGB Birmingham = 2ndMaster = 3rd

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About the author

Carl Fisher