Hollywood legend Steven Seagal lavished praise on the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship, declaring that the sport is “in great hands” in Abu Dhabi after making a guest appearance at the 13th edition of the largest and most prestigious event on the global Jiu-Jitsu calendar.
The former action movie star, a seventh dan black belt in aikido, enjoyed the action on day four at the Jiu-Jitsu Arena in Abu Dhabi, watching some key bouts in the men and women (under 30) tournaments and taking to the podium to crown a number of champions in the blue and purple belt categories.
He said: “This championship is a wonderful event, the athletes I have seen have all put in great performances – each and every one has put their heart on the line. What impressed me most here is the dedication of the players to win their competitions. Every player I watched put in an amazing performance, and I look forward to seeing the same with the brown and black belt bouts.”
“The support Jiu-Jitsu receives in Abu Dhabi is key to developing a promising next generation of global champions. I am confident that the distinguished efforts being put in by Abu Dhabi will see real results in ten years, with champions rising from right here in the UAE’s capital. The sport is in great hands due to the great support received from the country’s leadership,” added Seagal.
Fahad Ali Al Shamsi, Secretary-General of the UAEJJF, said: “We were pleased to receive an important figure in the world of MMA.”
“We are proud of the great levels of interest in the Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship; and the appeal that the tournament has at the global level. Welcoming international superstars such as Steven Seagal is true testament of the championship and what it represents to the sport globally,” added Al Shamsi.