Tuesday, 14 August 2012

I really wanted to win a trip to Abu Dhabi

After the Ascension tournament, I had my confidence back.  I felt like I had gotten most of the rust off from my long time off and I was back into the swing of things.  So I registered for the Montreal Abu Dhabi Pro Trials.  

We had a pretty decent size team head out to Montreal for the event, which was pretty cool.   Weigh Ins were the day before, which was great, for those on the team who weren't in an open weight class.  Unfortunately, for the Abu Dhabi Pro Trials,  there is only 2 weight classes for women.  and I'd likely have to cut off a leg to make the lower one.   The weigh ins all went fine,  hopefully next year they bring in some more staff, or find a way to stream line the process because it wasn't to quick, and the line up filled up the entire hotel lobby for much of the afternoon/evening.

The venue for this tournament is the BEST venue in Canada for grappling competitions.  The
Centre Pierre-Charbonneau is a great venue,  It has seating all around the "arena"  and the arena is sunk in, it's almost pretty square, so there isn't really a bad angle from anywhere.  I've got some good memories at this place from judo tournaments back in the day and that familiarity helped me be focused and get into the zone so to speak.  

So my fight was the only (or maybe 1 of 2)  fights in the first round.  which means, unlike 90% of my division, I didn't automatically qualify for the absolute, which was the division that the winner gets the trip for.  I'm sure by the tone of this post already  you can guess how my match went.   I lost.  It wasn't a terrible match,  It was very close on points, but then i got frustrated, and left my arm out,  and tapped.  The worst part is, my arm wasn't in trouble,  before I had even tapped the first tap it was free.   I think in my head, I had given up because I was down on points and there was very little time left.   I quit fighting, and that's the worst thing in the world.  

After the match, I managed to mostly hold myself together until I got away from people, but I was so mad at myself, and disappointed with myself that I couldn't hold back the tears.  Once I got myself back together (mostly)  I headed back up to my team to cheer them on and whatnot.  As long as I didn't think or talk about my match I was fine.   It's funny, even now, like 6 months later, if i think about it I get angry at myself and If I dwell on it to long I'll get on the verge of tears.  I hate being a girl sometimes!! 

Sadly, none of the team was able to win the finals of the absolutes to win a trip.  At least we got to go some early sunday instead of having to wait around for someone to fight in the final.  There's always a silver lining, or something like that!

On the way home, my team mate Alasdair (who also really wanted to win a trip)  asked me if I wanted to go to NYC in two weeks to try to win the trip there.   I don't think he was serious at first,  but the more we thought about it, the more it seemed like a great idea.    So we registered, booked a hotel, and bought some overnight bus tickets.    Sadly, Alasdair ended up separating his shoulder in a super fight at sub x. and we scrambled to replace him, so Kyle came along instead, which was fine by me!  I just didn't want to be in NYC by myself!

We got to the bus station in Buffalo early,  so ended up on an earlier, express bus, which put us in New York at 3 or 4 am.    We found a cab and got to our hotel.  (which has a checkin time of 4pm.)   Thankfully, No one was in our room that night/morning so they allowed us to checkin!   I'm so glad they did, we were exhausted and I have no idea what we would have done otherwise.  

On Saturday we wandered to time square and did a bit of shopping and site seeing.  Then weighed in.  Nothing to exciting or unusual.   We got some food after,  and I spent the evening relaxing in the hotel and Kyle wandered NYC.    We had a great breakfast at the breakfast diner across the road from the hotel, checked out, and took a cab to the venue.

I think by the end of the weekend we ended up spending at least 100 bucks on cab fairs!   But it was convenient and got us where we needed to be.   We had some adventures trying to get a hotel back to NYC proper after the event, but it all worked out in the end.

On to the event!    I got a better draw this time around, sort of,  At least if I lost the first round, I could still get into the absolute!  Good thing to, because I lost on points, to the eventual division winner Nicole Whissel.   It was a close match but her wrestling and tight guard prevailed.   I won't get into details, but the timing for this tournament was bad, and I was probably at about 50% strength, which, when dealing with wrestlers, isn't so good, but even at 100% I think I would/will have trouble against Nichole. She's one tough chick!     I had some trouble convincing the tournament people that I still qualified,  They thought it was only semi finalists, not quarter finalists. But once they saw their own tournament flyer It was all sorted out.

In the absolute, they had some pretty crazy draws.  The first place people from the two divisions ended up facing each other in the first round!  and losers like me had byes!   I wasn't going to complain, I needed all the help I could get.    There was a lot of draws that day that had much bigger problems.  (like people having 2 or 3 rounds of byes straight into the semi finals, in a division of 16 ish).   Anyway....   In the Quarter finals,  I faced Rita Floyd in a good match. I ended up winning by arm bar!  

Then in the Semi's I fought Hana Fisher.   We had some good stand up back and forth ness, and then I pulled guard, I should have trusted in my Judo more, but I didn't see any good openings, and didn't want to waste to much energy and time on it.    She ended up passing my terrible guard and we had some scrambles and back and forths  and I ended up in  kimura somewhere in there.    Now, I have a bit of a past with kimura's I've been in a few to many and my shoulders really don't like them.  So i tapped fast and that was the end up my day.    Hana ended up winning the trip, so I at least lost to the champ.   She medaled in Abu Dhabi and also placed 2nd at worlds.  So I don't feel terrible losing to her at all.  Hana and Nichole had a crazy crazy crazy close match for the final. I felt sad for Nichole because she, like me, had competed in Montreal with less then the desired results! 

I think the level of competition in NYC was actually higher then Montreal. Hana came all the way from Texas, and there were girls from all over.    In the end I was bummed about not winning the trip (again), but Not nearly as devastated as I was in Montreal.   I don't really know why.   What I do know is that next year,  I am going to win a trip.   I have been training and competing like a crazy person and no one is going to stop me from getting to Abu Dhabi. 

1 comment:

  1. Being a tournament addict definitely does have its advantages. As an addict you face a lot of fighters from all over and test yourself against a wide range of experiences and techniques. The more fights you have the more lessons you learn. You're deeply motivated and I have no doubt you'll make it to Abu Dhabi next year.