Eddie Bravo Invitational (EBI) 12, organised by Eddie Bravo, was the first time that a jiu jitsu platform gave full attention to the female division of the sport, producing the category’s prime flyweight champion (125lbs).
For this elimination style tournament Bravo headlined some of grappling’s most prominent flyweight females, a mix of points based and sub-only athletes in one of EBI’s most stacked and electrifying events to date. One of the athletes that stood out the most was Darragh O’Connaill‘s brown belt student Ffion Davies, who was also the first female athlete from the United Kingdom on the event. A 2017 IBJJF world champion as a purple belt, Davies was promoted last month and came in as a last minute replacement – facing the tournament’s #1 seed Talita Alencar, an IBJJF black belt world champion in the gi and no-gi. Ffion brought the fight to Alencar, passing the guard on two occasions and even securing the back and the mount. In the end Talita Alencar managed to weather the storm and take the win in one of the most exciting matches of the night.
Arguably the most surprising win of the night belonged to Katherine Shen, a rising talent of the 10th Planet Oceanside academy and a purple belt under the Martinez brothers. Galvanised by the incredible live audience Shen defeated a well established competitor in Pati Fontes on the first round of the tournament.
If there was a ‘Most Gut Wrenching Moment of the Night’ award, that would certainly go to Gabi Mcomb’s victory over Talita Alencar. Talita was the aggressor 100% of the time with Mcomb back pedalling the full duration of the 10 minute match (an attitude that would likely grant her a few penalties and a possible DQ in a standard BJJ tournament). The Over Time rounds saw more of the same, with Alencar pushing for the submission in all rounds and Mcomb holding on, not attempting a finish and waiting to improve her escape time. In the end, Gabi’s strategy worked. She advanced to the final.
The final of the flyweight tournament was decided between two immensely talented teenagers with very different styles. Silver Fox’s Erin Blanchfield (18YO) proved why she is seen as one of the biggest talents in North America today. Promoted to purple belt less than a year ago, Blanchfield did not shy away from her competitors, pushing for the submission throughout the tournament and showing she is very comfortable with this rules format. On the other side of the bracket was late replacement, Gabi Mcomb (19YO) of Gracie South Bay – student of the legendary Letícia Ribeiro, who played a more defensive/tactical game on her way to the podium. In the end these tactics fell short to Blanchfield who proved this was her day, an incredible achievement for this mega talented East Coast talent.
The full match results went as follows:
– Talita Alencar (Alliance) defeated Ffion Davies (CF 24) by way of palm to palm choke.
– Rachael Cummins (Gracie Fighter) defeated Cristal Demopolous (GFT) by way of armbar.
– Gabi Mcomb (Gracie Humaitá) defeated Kayla Patterson (Memphis J&JJ) by way of Over Time (Fastest Sub).
– Gabby Romero (Clube Hollywood) defeated Kristina Barlaan (CTA) by way of Over Time (Fastest Escape).
– Katherine Shen (10th Planet) defeated Pati Fontes (Checkmat) by way of Over Time (Fastest Sub).
– Erin Blanchfield (Silver Fox) defeated Livia Gluchowska (Absolute MMA) by way of Over Time (Fastest Sub).
– Lila Smadja (10th Planet) defeated Olympia Watts (GB Texas) by way of mounted guilhotine.
– Nikki Sulivan (Nice Guy JJ) defeated Fiona Watson (Fight Club) by way of leg scissors choke.
– Talita Alencar (Alliance) defeated Rachael Cummins (Gracie Fighter) by way of armbar.
– Gabi Mcomb (Gracie Humaitá) defeated Gabby Romero (Clube Hollywood) by way of Over Time (Fastest Sub).
– Erin Blanchfield (Silver Fox) defeated Katherine Shen (10th Planet) by way of kimura.
– Lila Smadja (10th Planet) defeated Nikki Sulivan (Nice Guy JJ) by way of outside heel hook.
– Gabi Mcomb (Gracie Humaitá) defeated Talita Alencar (Alliance) by way of Over Time (Fastest Escape)
– Erin Blanchfield (Silver Fox) defeated Lila Smadja (10th Planet) by way of armbar.
– Erin Blanchfield (Silver Fox) defeated Gabi Mcomb (Gracie Humaitá) by way of Over Time (Fastest Sub.)
Ilima Lei McFarlane defeated Brooke Mayo by way of Over Time (Fastest Sub).
Celine Haga defeated Amy Montenegro by way of Over Time (Fastest Sub).
Llima Lei McFarlane defeated Celine Haga by way of kimura.
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