Pictured above: regional qualifying action in Italy The month ahead will see three nations from around the world continue the process of national team qualifiers, continuing the worldwide momentum ahead of the 2017 IMMAF World Championships in Bahrain. Top amateur athletes from Colombia, Austria and Italy will compete in a bid to seal positions in the national amateur squad before travelling to Bahrain in November for this year’s World Championships taking place form 12-19 November. Kicking things off on July 8, The Austrian MMA Federation (AUTMMAF) hosts the Austrian Fight Cup XIII at the appropriately named Champions Sports Center in the city of Graz. The Austrian Fight Cup takes place every few months and provides qualifying opportunities and combat experience to young and developing athletes from AUTMMAF registered clubs. 6 Athletes represented Austria at last year’s World Championships with Damian Visenjak taking home bronze in the super-heavyweight division. Also on July 8, the Colombian Association of Mixed Martial Arts (OCAMM), who regularly oversee the nation’s exciting amateur circuit, present the national qualifying championships for Bahrain 2017. The qualifying event will play out in the high-altitude capital city of Bogotá. In Las Vegas 2016 OCAMM nominated 3 athletes to compete at the IMMAF Worlds including, women’s bantamweight Claudia Barragana and men’s bantamweight duo Bryan Munoz and Mauricio Daza. The 2017 OCAMM Championships presents a fresh opportunity for for competitors across 11 weight brackets from women’s strawweight to men’s light-heavyweight. On July 15 the second qualifying stage of FIGMMA’s Italian national team trials takes place back in Rome. The second stage will be hosted by the Hung Mun Martial Society and welcomes representing athletes from registered FIGMMA clubs as they work their way to the national finals. As one of the busiest national governing bodies under the IMMAF umbrella, FIGMMA has already overseen 8 events from April to June and has yet another active year ahead. In past years Italy has been among the world’s most decorated national teams and at the 2016 World Championships a squad of 10 athletes with experienced national champions made their way to Las Vegas. Stay tuned for further national qualifying championships around the world in coming months. For more information, results and live updates on the events mentioned above, visit the official event pages on MyNextMatch.com.