Theyab Al Nuaimi and Mariam Al Ameri struck gold as the UAE topped the table with nine medals on the opening day of the fifth Jiu-Jitsu Asian Championships in Abu Dhabi on Monday.
From the six finals, three for women and two for men, the host nation bagged two golds, three silvers and four bronze at the Jiu-Jitsu Arena.
Kazakhstan clinched two golds, a silver and four bronze while Thailand finished on a gold, silver and two bronze and Jordan with one gold, a silver and two bronze.
Al Ameri overcame Areewan Chansri of Thailand in the women’s 70-plus kilogram final while Al Nuaimi got the better of Zayed Al Katheeri in an all-Emirati final in the men’s 56kg.
Joining them in the medal rush for the UAE were Ahoud Al Kaabi, Shamsa Al Ameri (both taking silver), Maitha Shraim, Haya Al Jhoori, Shamsa Al Ketbi and Mohammed Ali Al Suwaidi (all bronze).
“We are glad and really proud of what we achieved today, and wish we can add more to this tally on Tuesday,” Al Nuaimi said.
“To meet my friend Zayed was another good achievement for the UAE. The tougher fights for me were in the preliminaries, and then to make it an all-Emirati final was really fantastic.”
Al Nuami had to overcome Jae Won-kim in the opening round before wins over Uzbek Sarvarbek Rakhmonberdiev and Kazkah Nurzhan Seiduali to earn a final meeting with Al Katheeri.
“It didn’t matter who won the gold at the end, either way it’s a victory for the UAE,” Al Nuaimi added.
Shamsa Al Ketbi, who won bronze in the women’s 70kg, said the experience and a medal at the continental championship was a personal best for her.
“My objective from the outset was to go for gold and I tried very hard but just couldn’t achieve that,” she said. “I’m happy with the bronze and also I can take a lot of positives from this championship.”