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Brazilian senator, who is also a Jiu-Jitsu black-belt, pays homage to Wand

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With R.NThe leader of the PSDB party in the Brazilian senate, Senator Arthur Virgilio, a black-belt from back in the old days, admires the world of Mixed Martial Arts. When he has a break from his long political combats in Brasilia, capital of Brazil, senator Virgilio follow the sport of vale-tudo. He was in the first rowe, very near to the ring of the first Jungle Fight, in Amazon, on September 13th of 2003. Recently the politician wrote an emotional article about the fight between his compatriot Wanderlei Silva (Chute Boxe) and the giant from New Zealand Mark Hunt, at Pride on December 31st. ‘I saw that Jiu-Jitsu had become a crippled martial-art, something limited, a modality that just represented a small part of the whole modern cross-training. Fortunately, I was completely wrong, and I discovered it watching the last confrontation of this phenomenon named Wanderlei Silva’ says Senator Virgilio, direct from his workroom in the upper legislative house in Brazil. ‘Wanderlei persisted until the end of the combat because he fought excellent Jiu-Jitsu against Hunt. Otherwise, the New Zealander would have knocked the champion out. Hunt for his part didn?t lose to Wanderlei because he practiced a lot of Jiu-Jitsu [with Brazilian back-belt Marcelo Rezende] and became a very different fighter than the one who, naively, had given his arm to Hidehiko Yoshida?s lock [at Pride – Critical Countdown, which took place on June 20th, 2004]’. Senator Virgilio concluded: ‘Mixed Martial Arts trainers put together a lot of fighting styles. It means evolution and perfection, but Jiu-Jitsu keeps representing the ‘the jewel of the crown’, a marked difference from other styles. Jiu-Jitsu allowed Wanderlei to finish the combat mounted on Mark Hunt, a warrior almost 30kg heavier than the Brazilian black-belt. It ‘washed my soul!’. Just out of curiosity: Virgilio?s party, PSDB, is the #1 opponent of PT, the party of Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

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