Tussa caps off 2012 with a Victory at the IBJJF Heavyweight Pro League
Gracie Barra New Mexico Head Instructor adds another gold to his mantle
LONG BEACH, Calif. – Gracie Barra head Instructor Roberto “Tussa” Alencar took another trip to the top of the podium as he picked up the gold medal at the 1st International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Pro League on Saturday, December 9, 2012. Tussa had two fights before the heavyweight final. In the gold-medal match Tussa was awarded the victory after his opponent Bruno Bastos was unable to continue due to an injury.
“It was a long year,” said the black-belt champion. “I started the season in January and ended it this past Saturday with the Pro league heavyweight title. It feels like a mission accomplished and I am very happy to win and bring the gold back to New Mexico.”
The win was the third of the year for Tussa. He also picked up victories at the IBJJF No-Gi Pan-Ams and the IBJJF No-Gi World Championships.
This was the first IBJJF event that awarded the champion prize money. The winner of each weight class took home a cool 5,000 dollars. Tussa had two fights that both went the distance. In his first fight Tussa picked up a 2-0 win over Gustavo Elias. In the semifinal match Alencar was forced to fight Gracie Barra teammate Gustavo Pries and won 3-0 on advantages.
“At the Black Belt level everybody shows up ready to win,” said Alencar. “No one goes there unprepared. I was expecting a war out there especially because there was prize money on table. My first match was against a young talented guy that I’ve been watching for while. We had a great battle on our feet until I got a take down. After that I was on top trying to pass the whole match. I scored some extras advantage points and won after 10-minute time limit. My second match was against a teammate and was very close. Half of the fight was on our feet, studying and waiting for the best opportunity. No points were scored and the match came down to advantage points securing my spot in the final. My opponent (Bastos) couldn’t fight due to an injury in his previous mach.”
In most other IBJJF tournaments teammates are set on opposite sides of the bracket so they won’t have to face each other unless each person wins their side of the bracket. Then they have the option to fight each other or close out the bracket with one person getting the gold and the other the silver. Since this tournament offered prize money to the champion, teammates would have to fight each other.
“We knew that we would fight the teammate before the final,” said Tussa. “I think is easier fight your teammate because you know their game and you can set the strategy. But it is hard to step on the mat and fight your friend. I prefer not to fight a teammate but money and a big title were on the line so we had to.”
After a busy 2012 Tussa will take a short rest, grab his gi, and get right back to training and running one of the best schools in New Mexico.
“I am resting a couple of days,” he said. “Then I start to focus on the 2013 season. I’m counting down to January 26, my first tournament of the season.”