Artaxias brings together best NZ BJJ exponents

By Tamati Tiananga

The finest that BJJ has to offer according to Titoko Renata of Ngāti Tūwharetoa ki Kawerau "It means heaps to me it's the first one ever, it is the foundation of things to come hopefully".

Brad Kora of Ngai Tūhoe said 'It was a real honour to have many of the guys I look up to in the same event tonight at the show and it was a great success so it should be a good one next year".

Black belt Patrick Te Tau of Ngāti Kahungunu and Rangitāne faced Macelo Lopez from Nelson, he said "I was trying to think about the short route to get into that dominant position so that I can attack and that's what I did tonight, there were some technical things that I have been working on for the last six months and I was able to work them".

Patrick travelled to America to prepare for his fight, and was privileged to train with the best in the world and his efforts paid off.

"We kind of spent the bulk of our trip in New York city training with Marcelo Garcia and his club of Absolute Killers".

In the main black belt event, Hawkes Bay Orphans BJJ black belt Dan Digby won beating Fernando Junior from Tu Kaha, Auckland.

In the purple belt fights, Titoko faced Rion Hakiwai from Allegiance BJJ. It was a tough night for both fighters that ended in a draw.

Whakatāne MMA fighter, head trainer Brad Kora took on Hayden Wilson of Groundworx BJJ, Christchurch.

Brad said "It was really tough I tried my hardest to get the finish and unfortunately I ran out of time but I was stoked I went the distance" The fight ended in a draw.

Many of the fighters say standard of fights have set the benchmark for next year.