ABU DHABI, 30th October, 2023 (WAM) — Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, the 15th Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship (ADWPJJC), recognised as the largest and most prestigious jiu-jitsu event worldwide, is set to commence Wednesday, at the Mubadala Arena in Zayed Sports City. The championship will run until Friday, November 10, 2023.
The UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation announced that this year’s edition will be nothing short of exceptional as it marks the event’s 15th anniversary. They noted that the event promises to be the grandest and most distinguished event in its history, building upon the resounding successes of the past 14 editions. This edition will witness the participation of an unprecedented 7,000 male and female athletes, including top-ranked champions hailing from 127 countries. Competitors will vie for a total prize purse of 3 million Dirhams.
The announcement was made at the official press conference, held at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in the capital, Abu Dhabi, which was attended by several dignitaries and officials, including H.E Mohamed Salem Al Dhaheri, Vice Chairman of the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation and Chairman of the Championship Organizing Committee; H.E. Saood Abdulaziz Al Hosani, Undersecretary of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi; H.E. Aref Hamad Al Awani, Secretary General of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council; Mr. Yaqoob Al Saadi, Head of Abu Dhabi Sports Channels; Mr. Saed Hijazi Salameh, General Manager Sales, Jaguar Land Rover at Premier Motors and Mr. Fahad Al Shamsi, Secretary General of the UAE and Asian Jiu-Jitsu Federations. Additionally, some of the brightest stars and champions of jiu-jitsu were present at the event.
During his address, Al Dhaheri expressed his gratitude to His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, a role model, and an endless source of inspiration for success and embracing challenges. He also appreciated His Highness Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, for his generous support of the tournament and his valuable guidance, which serves as the cornerstone for ensuring the event’s success.
Al Dhaheri said, “Today, we celebrate fifteen years of success and excellence that have significantly elevated the global jiu-jitsu landscape. We are excited to extend a warm welcome to the international jiu-jitsu community in the UAE and the World’s Jiu-Jitsu Capital, Abu Dhabi. Our commitment is to ensure that everyone enjoys the finest possible experience, from their arrival in the capital to their departure after the tournament’s conclusion.”
Al Dhaheri added: “We also unite in pride for the remarkable accomplishments of UAE athletes in numerous international championships held in Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, and China. We take pride in the triumphs of our champions, in whom we placed our trust, and who rose to the challenge. These achievements stand as a testament to the fact that the seeds of success sown by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, have flourished, borne fruit, and blossomed worldwide. Without His Highness’s unwavering support, the sport of Jiu-Jitsu would not have made such rapid advancements on the global stage.”
Al Dhaheri also expressed his gratitude to the UAEJJF sponsors, strategic partners, and media representatives for their support of the championship.
Saood Abdulaziz Al Hosani, Undersecretary of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi, said, “Abu Dhabi continues to consolidate its position as the World Capital of Jiu-Jitsu by hosting the largest international championships and attracting elite sports stars from all over the world.”
Al Hosani further added, “The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi deeply comprehends the immense significance and outcomes of hosting an event as grand as the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship, particularly in relation to its positive influence on society. Schools in the UAE have wholeheartedly embraced Jiu-Jitsu for over 15 years, with the goal of instilling a comprehensive set of moral and athletic values in an entire generation. These values include self-confidence, humility, respect, commitment, and goal setting, while simultaneously playing a vital role in shaping resilient and competent generations that prioritize health and physical fitness.”
“We acknowledge that sports serve as a foundational element of DCT- Abu Dhabi’s strategy, with the ADWPJJC standing out as one of its most prominent components, alongside other major and noteworthy tournaments organized in the emirate. It is essential to underscore the unwavering support from our visionary leadership as the primary guarantee of the country’s sports development, especially in the capital, Abu Dhabi, which has risen to a preeminent position on the global jiu-jitsu stage.”
Aref Al Awani, Secretary General of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, said, “The Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship is a significant extension of the plans and programmes designed to attract major international sporting events to the capital.”
“We extend our congratulations to the UAE National Team for their remarkable achievements in recent championships, particularly the Asian Games. We also commend the efforts of the UAEJJF, which, since its inception, has been dedicated to advancing and popularizing the sport and expanding its practitioner base. We are fully committed to ensuring the success of this edition” Al Awani added.
Yaqoob Al Saadi, Head of Abu Dhabi Sports Channels, said: “The Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship has undeniably evolved into a significant sporting event in terms of both participation and accomplishments. This is particularly evident in the outstanding achievements of the national team in the recent Asian Games, which were made possible through the unwavering support of our wise leadership and the tireless efforts of the UAE Jiu-Jitsu Federation. As a long-standing strategic media partner for the sport, we take pride in seeing Jiu-Jitsu now as a sport that superbly represents the UAE on various global platforms. We are committed to persistently extending our support to UAEJJF and this world championship.”
Fahad Al Shamsi, Secretary General of the UAE and Asian Jiu-Jitsu Federations, said, “The 15th edition of the championship witnessed a record-breaking level of participation, with an unprecedented number of players from across the globe, representing a 40% increase compared to the previous year. This tournament has reached its highest participant count since its establishment in 2009, with 7,000 athletes hailing from 127 countries all set to participate. To accommodate this remarkable turnout, the tournament’s duration has been extended to span over 10 days. Additionally, a full day has been allocated for amateur category competitions.”
He continued: “The 15th edition of the ADWPJJC also marks an increase in the value of prizes to AED 3 million and the introduction of rewards for new categories of competitors. The final matches of the black belt professionals will take place on November 10th and will be running from 6 pm – 9 pm to accommodate a larger audience and cater to the extensive community of Jiu-Jitsu enthusiasts.”
Saed Hijazi Salameh, General Manager Sales, Jaguar Land Rover at Premier Motors, said, “Since its inception, we have consistently been one of the most prominent supporters of the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship. Its activities have significantly contributed to fortifying Abu Dhabi and the UAE’s reputation as a prime destination for hosting major sporting events. Throughout the years, the Federation has exerted remarkable efforts to promote and raise awareness about the significance of sports, especially among the younger generations, recognizing that the best investment in the country is an investment in its youth.”
He went on to say, “We are delighted to serve as a key partner of the Federation during this exceptional edition of the tournament. As part of our partnership and close collaboration, we take great pride in offering fans the chance to enter a draw for a Ford Bronco while they attend the competitions, which is one of the special surprises we provide.”
The championship runs from November 1 to 10 and includes the following events: the Abu Dhabi World Jiu-Jitsu Festival on November 1-2, the = Para Jiu-Jitsu competitions on November 1, the Youth competitions on November 3-4, the Amateur on November 5, and the Masters competitions on November 6-7. The pinnacle of the event is the Professional category competitions, featuring athletes of purple to black belts from November 8 to 10, followed by the Abu Dhabi World Jiu-Jitsu Awards ceremony on November 11.