Won one, 25-0; lost one 19-0. Silver.

Obviously happy with the first. I pulled guard, got the sweep and then just stayed ahead of him the whole match; moving around well. Inevitably I’m slightly disappointed that I didn’t make it to a submission. At one point I definitely should have had an arm bar from mount but didn’t quite control the position well enough. I needed to mentally shift from flowing around his efforts (which had been working well) to locking him down in mount a bit. I was just still a bit too loose. Had a slightly nasty moment towards the end when he made a pretty determined series of attempts to wrist lock me. But fought them off to take the points victory.

Second, was almost a rerun of the first — but with me being the one behind. Pulled guard, but didn’t establish a good position; he slipped past and I ended up struggling in side control for the majority of the match. I’m pretty sure he had points for both mount and the back as well (possibly more than once). My guard retention / guard recovery clearly needs work. On the other hand, I did stave off the submission attempts pretty well and never felt in serious danger of tapping.

Unfortunately no film this time due to a lack of teammates available at the relevant time.

Broadly, I’m taking this as the first comp of my 2017-18 season (The Euros being in January makes that a good endpoint). So, with that in mind I’m cautiously pleased to have held my own at blue belt. But obviously much more work to be done yet. I also suspect that the British Open (with a bigger bracket) will give me a better sense of where I am.

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