By Caoilte de Barra
At the 2021 IMMAF-WMMAA World Championships, Mexico will return to international competition for the first time since 2019. The Mexican Mixed Martial Arts Federation (FAMM) have been working hard to prepare for the tournament. Notably organising a gathering of talents back in September – a successful multi-day retreat. Not to mention hosting multiple tournaments all over Mexico.
The team always brings a great atmosphere to the competition and their return will be more than welcome. They will be sending 19 athletes from 10 different states to represent their country on the world stage.
Some returning athletes include 2019 World Junior Silver medalist Nora Ochoa and 2019 Pan American Silver medalist Violeta Mendoza. Ochoa had one of the best runs for Mexico in the World Championships, winning two fights in two days to set up a finals bout with German standout Anna Gaul. A third-round armbar loss saw her take home a silver medal, the best result for the federation across both senior and junior.
Speaking on behalf of FAMM, Javier Rodriguez outlined the desire to return to competition and the ambition for this tournament.
“Returning the Mexican team to compete will be a real pleasure, the hunger to compete is stronger than ever, each one of our athletes is willing to show the Mexican heart and the combat-related skill that is so characteristic of our country. We will have a very young team that has been growing and competing in our national tournaments, they are ready to take the previous generation’s place and make their own history.”
“In the last world championship back in 2019 the Mexican team gained five medals, one silver and four bronzes with 12 athletes. This year with 19, our goal is to get the most gold medals we can and surpass the 2019 number of medals. We have a great team and we know that we can compete at the highest level against any country. We want to return to the top 10 of the world ranking and will work very hard to make that happen.”
He went on to detail the work that was done to keep the athletes active and sharp ahead of the competition in January.
“The Federation was able to keep the athletes competing at a local level, and as soon as the covid 19 restrictions permitted sport activities, we started to reactivate the tournaments around the country.”
“We had held a total of 20 amateur tournaments from April 2021 to December, including tournaments like Desafio Marcial (which was run in 4 states at the same time, making this tournament the biggest of his kind in our country), Statal Tournaments in Campeche, Tamaulipas, Chihuahua, Edomex, Cdmx, Guanajuato, Coahuila, Queretaro, Nuevo León and San Luis.”
We are looking forward to the world championships. We had a national selection camp held in Morelos from September 16 to 19. The camp included psychology talks, training sessions of striking, grappling and MMA, also physical measures and strength tests that provide our coaches all the information necessary to work on the athletes.”
The full squad list for the Mexican team for the 2021 IMMAF-WMMAA World Championships is as follows.
Nora Ochoa (Chihuahua) – Strawweight
Violeta Mendoza (Chihuahua) – Flyweight
Valeria Gomez Frausto (Guanajuato) – Jr Strawweight
Andrea Gabriela Guzman Salazar (Jalisco) – Featherweight
Melissa Alexandra Diaz Medina (Tamaulipas) – Lightweight
Luis Enrique Gonzalez Martinez (Chiapas) – Lightweight
Jorge Raul Zaragoza de la Cruz (CDMX) – Middleweight
Victor Gerardo Quintana Vazquez (CDMX) – Featherweight
Anthony Ramirez Amado (Chihuahua) – Bantamweight
Jesus Ernesto Guillen Mendoza (Chihuahua) – Light Heavyweight
Daniel Flores Sartorius (EDOMEX) – Heavyweight
Jafet Manzo Bueno (EDOMEX) – Strawweight
Cruz Emmanuel Garcia Gonzalez (Guanajuato) – Jr Welterweight
Israel Salcido Guzman Salazar (Jalisco) – Welterweight
Jorge Antonio Lopez Perez (Michoacán) – Flyweight
León Rodrigo Rodriguez Aguirre (Nuevo Leon) – Jr Lightweight
Jaime Sierra (Tamaulipas) – Jr Flyweight
Jorge Cobos Marin (San Luis Potosí) – Jr Bantamweight
Diego Torres Rangel (San Luis Potosí) – Jr Middleweight