By Caoilte de Barra
From July 29 – 30, the Jordan Mixed Martial Arts Federation held its national championships at the Martyr Rashid Al-Zayoud Hall, Al-Hussein Youth City. Six teams participated in the two-day tournament, where seven new national champions were crowned.
The Jordan national team have been impressing on the IMMAF circuit and hope to build upon the number of athletes that travelled to Abu Dhabi for the 2021 World Championships. The national championships will help select a team as they ready themselves to compete at the upcoming set of Asia and World Championships.
Top prospect Hazem Kayyali made his return to the cage after a disappointing runout at the World Championships. The middleweight standout burst onto the IMMAF scene in 2019, competing as a light heavyweight. However, he was unable to make waves in that division and bowed out of the tournament in the semi-finals.
He went on to enter the 2021 World Cup in Prague, a division lower, where he arguably stole the show with his grappling prowess and took home gold. At the national championships, the BJJ brown belt was just as impressive, utilising ground and pound to open up the opportunity for an armbar which he snatched at immediately to get the win in the final. This rounded off a big month for him after winning gold at the AJP Tour Jordan Nationals the previous week.
His teammate Abdalrhman Alhyasat joined him in securing gold for the team after he dominated the lightweight division. This win saw him bounce back from his quarter-final loss at the World Championships.
Elsewhere, Abdul Rahman Al-Talawi took gold at flyweight, while Mahdi Awad topped the podium in the featherweight division. A full list of medalists from the Jordan National Championships can be found here.
The tournament marks a significant moment for the federation as they continue to build talent in the nation. The federation is currently preparing its youth team to compete at the 2022 Youth World Championships. Four athletes were selected to represent Jordan in Abu Dhabi this year, a significant increase from last year’s sole entry.