FORMER sportswriter Lemuel Maglinte captured the biggest win of his martial arts career after winning the 140 Pounds Masters-Expert Division of the Brazilian Jiu-jitsu (BJJ) tournament of the Rocky Mountain Nationals on July 11 (PH time) at the Las Vegas Convention Center, which was attended by around 3,000 wrestlers and grapplers.
Maglinte won the belt after submitting Jose Maseas via a triangle choke in the finals.
“I’m grateful for the defeats and hardships. These made the victory sweeter,” said Maglinte.
Maglinte qualified and tested the Absolute division, wherein all the placers of the different weight divisions will compete against each other. He, however, was eliminated in his first match against a bigger opponent.
Maglinte is an MMA fighter and a BJJ competitor that started his martial arts journey at the Yaw-Yan Ardigma Cebu under Master Benigno “Ekin” Caniga Jr. He has been in the United States since 2019 and has been holed up in Las Vegas since the Covid-19 pandemic broke out in 2020. In his stay in the US, he has been honing his skills training in different gyms, the likes of 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu and Xtreme Couture.
Maglinte plans to return home and impart the knowledge and experience that he learned in the US.
“This is my last competition in the US. I want to form a solid team in Cebu and share to them the knowledge that I have learned here,” said Maglinte.
“If I have the sponsors, I want to have free grappling training for kids, especially street kids.”
Maglinte believes that the Philippines is still way behind in BJJ compared to the US. He hopes that his knowledge will improve the quality of BJJ here in Cebu.
“I want to share everything with Cebuanos right now because what I learned is still fresh in my mind,” he said. “There’s still a very huge disparity when it comes to technique.” (EKA)