The second last leg of the ADCC trials are now in the bag with a great day of competition in Sydney Australia for the South Pacific Qualifiers. The venue was incredible being the Olympic venue in 2000. But all the competitors, judges and spectators had to work extra hard on the day as it was very hot in the arena.Competitors came from all over Australia and New Zealand for the chance to qualify and everyone new this was the most important event on the Australian grappling calendar that only comes around once every two years.All the lighter divisions were more than full which was great to see. The only down side was the heavyweights didn?t have to work that hard as the pools were small. This was also the first competition in ADCC history to have women competing which was great to see.Most of the weight divisions had a seeding system for the top two qualifiers from a previous competition which worked out well.Winners:Under 65kg – Eugene Hynson – New Zealand Submission66-76kg – Gavin Kulper – Extreme 77-87kg – Larry Papadopoulos – Extreme 88-98kg – Anthony Perosh – SPMA 99kg & Over Dennis Roberts – SPMAWomenUnder 60kg – Sari Redzeposki – SPMA Over 60kg – Stacey Cartwright. The stand out performances and matches on the day were as follows:Under 65kgThis was the hardest division to pick with great competitors. Previous champion Derkson, runner-up Sinclair, Australian and Olympic wrestler Jaeggi, Australian Junior wrestling champion Safaniev along with seasoned BJJ and MMA fighter’s like Ballard, Button, Fox and Resnikov all came to compete.Eugene Hynson, who was runner-up in the qualifiers for 2001, was seconds from being disqualified from his first match after his third and final call as he got lost on the way to the venue. He literally walked into the arena and onto the mat changing into his wrestling attire as he was walking. Hynson’s path to the final was 4 hard matches going the full time with Hynson winning each by points. He beat previous ADCC qualifier Derkson, Olympian Jaeggi, and Ballard who submitted his way into the semi final. On the other side of the Pool Resnikov made his way with four matches all won by submission. He had a close scare in his second match down by two points against wrestler Safaniev but managing to pull out a submission with just on a minute to go.In the final after some great submission attempts by Resnikov the score was still 0 – 0. Resnikov catches Hynson with a heel hook sunk deep. Everybody expecting the tap out but Hynson seemed to have a rubber knee joint and looked for his own leg lock. Resnikov changed to a figure 4 ankle lock which twisted the foot completely around and again Hynson looked relaxed and unworried. Hynson eventually pulled out and got Liam?s back, Resnikov was spent. Within seconds Hynson sunk in the choke and Resnikov tapped. 66-76kgAs predicted the top 2 seeds made their way to the semi finals. Sotiropoulos and Ballenden. The other two stand outs in this division were Rodney Ellis and Gavin Kulper.Kulper and Sotiropoulos were both South Pacific ADCC champions and both represented at previous world championshipsSotiropoulos? first match was quick with a Kimura in 45sec. His next match was a tough affair with unknown Kendrovski, going the distance and pushing George. His opponent in the semi Kulper had a hard 1-0 victory in full time against Pezzutti in his first then a submission in 3min in his second. In their semi-final it was even after normal time, with both trying greattakedowns but both countering each other. The match went into overtime withthe same attack and counter attack game. George was working incredibly hard to get Gavin down but he kept countering just when you thought it would happen.Eventually Kulper gets the takedown putting Sotiropoulos on his back for the mandatory 3 seconds and was able to keep George at bay to earn his way into the final. On the other half of the draw Ballenden and Ellis won their ways thru to their semi final encounter with two submissions each. This semi did not disappoint with both competitors willing to take risks and go for takedowns and submissions. Ellis eventually won out with a 3 – 0 lead at full time after getting Ballenden?s back but was not able to sink the choke. This was the sort of match people had come to see.The final proved the longest match of the day with two overtimes. The match went back and forward with both competitors scoring positive points and then being penalised for negative wrestling. Kulper scored continuously with takedowns but would loose points for backing out of the guard and stalling. Ellis would score points for reversals then lose points for pulling guard after Kulper stood up.In the 2nd overtime having wrestled a total of 25min 24sec Kulper threw Ellis solidly which Ellis could not recover from. Ellis was forced to withdraw due to injury. One of the best matches of the day. The 77-87kg division produced one of the greatest upsets of the day. The number two seed Ross Dallow was up against the highly rated Elvis Sinosic in the second round of the top half of the pool. Sinosic seemed to have early control ofthe match, with Dallow escaping near submissions with great skill. The match went into overtime. Dallow came out strong and hit Sinosic with a great hip toss for two points. Sinosic from that point pulled off a sweep to bring the points even again. Dallow managed to reverse for an additional 2 points. Sinosic tried to play his guard game but Dallow was too slick on the day and was awarded the win. On the same half of the pool Australian Representative Wrestler Turtle played a calculated game keeping his first two matches standing then scoring a takedown near the end of time to win the match. His semi final match against Giant Killer Dallow was a conservative affair with neither scoring points but Dallow receiving two negative points for pulling guard and Turtle one negative for evading contact. In the end won Turtle with fewer penalties.In the other half of the draw Papadopoulos the number one seed won his first two matches by submissions. The final was a slow affair with Turtle playing his game plan and waiting for the one takedown and stopping Papadopoulos? attempts to bring the fight to the ground. Turtle shot in with a quick single at 12min and was on the end of a guillotine which made him scramble to escape. With 60 seconds to go Turtle took his second shot of the match which Papadopoulos countered and threw Turtle. Turtle pulled guard which Papadopoulos passed into a head arm set up and tapped out Turtle with 3sec remaining on the clock.88-98kg This Division was not as strongly represented as we hoped. The twotop seeds Perosh and Oliver were seeded straight into the semi finals.Perosh submitting Frendin with a rear naked strangle in 3:53 and Oliversubmitting Christensen with the same technique in 6:03.The final was a slow affair Perosh catching Oliver with a Kimura in 10:52 Over 99kgWith late pull outs this became a 4 man division. Merritt submits DePaolis in 2:35 with a Kimura and Roberts just beating Knight 7 – 6 in full time. The final brings out one of the days most memorable throws with Roberts throwing 143kg Merritt with a belly to back suplex. Merritt turtle up to avoid the points but Roberts stays on the back to finish with rear naked choke 1min into the match.Women?s divisionIn the 60kg champion Sari Redzeposki used great technique to win the title with submissions in all her three matches. Sari submitted Mandy Stewart in5:14 then Donevska in 3:43. She then beat Janke in the final at 12:13. It looked like Janke was going to take the match almost scoring numerous guard passes but not finishing them. But a great result for Sari on the day.The other great upset of the day came in the women?s over 60kg . Stacey Cartwright out classed World BJJ champion Katonivualiku submitting her with a slick triangle at 11min 10sec.Stacey pulled guard straight away and used it to wear her opponent down. After about 6 minutes Phillipa stands in the guard and the fight is back up. Phillipa takes Stacey down and passes Stacey?s guard. Stacy recovers and pulls her back into guard. Stacy keeps attacking from underneath and eventually triangles Phillipa. She reverses and ends up on top to get the submission.This was the biggest turnout for the ADCC competition since their beginning in Australia for the 2001 qualifiers. The competition was also well attended with around 300 spectators. Congratulations to all that competed and most of all to the winners who will represent the region at the World Championships in Long Beach, California in May. Fingers are also crossed that the judges were happy with the standard of the Women?s division and that they will also get an invitation. Thanks also to all the volunteers who were magnificent on the day and the judges from Abu Dhabi, Europe and the USA. Pictures to follow soon.