Jackson Sousa

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Jackson Sousa dos Santos
Born (1990-01-24) January 24, 1990 (age 29)
Rio de Janeiro
Other namesJack, Jackzinho
NationalityBrazilian
Height1.90 m (6 ft 3 in)
Weight93 kg (205 lb; 14 st 9 lb)
DivisionHeavyweight
StyleBrazilian Jiu Jitsu
TeamCheckmat
TrainerRicardo Vieira
RankBlack belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Jackson Sousa dos Santos is a professional Brazilian jiu-jitsu and grappling competitor. He has won prestigious, international championships, including IBJJF World Championship, IBJJF World No-Gi Championship, IBJJF European Championship and IBJJF Pan American No-Gi Championship. He has also competed at international grappling events, including Absolute Championship Berkut, Polaris Pro Grappling and Metamoris. Sousa is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt under Ricardo Vieira and one of the CheckMat team's most prolific competitors[70]. He has also been hugely influenced by Leo Vieira. Sousa's training partners include several notable fighters, including Marcus Almeida, João Assis, Lucas Leite, Michelle Nicolini and Leandro Vieira. Sousa lives in London, United Kingdom.

Biography[edit]

Born on 24 January 1990 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Sousa started training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu at the age of ten under Leandro Martins who was part of the team founded by Fernando "Terere" Augusto.[71] At the age of 16, he joined the CheckMat team, founded by the brothers Ricardo Vieira, Leo Vieira and Leandro Vieira and headquartered in Sao Paulo, Brazil.[72] Sousa gave his international debut at the European Championships in 2011 and since then has been competing at an international level.

Professional career[edit]

In 2011, he won the South American Jiu-Jitsu Championship [73] and the Brazilian National No-Gi Championship[74].

In 2012, Sousa won the IBJJF European Championship in Lisbon, Portugal.[75] He also won five more gold medals at the IBJJF Brazilian National Jiu-Jitsu Championship, IBJJF Brazilian National No-Gi Championship and CBJJE World Championship[76][77][78].

In December 2012, the international Jiu-Jitsu community was disappointed when a super fight between Sousa and one of his biggest opponents, Keenan Cornelius, was cancelled due to the fact that Sousa was denied his visa for the US.[79][80][81] Sousa's first appearance in an American competition was finally made possible in 2013 when his US visa application was approved after four unsuccessful attempts in 2010, 2011 and 2012.[82][83][84] Sousa rose to fame winning gold in the heavyweight division and bronze in the absolute division in the IBJJF World Championship[85]. He lost the semi-final in the absolute division against Keenan Cornelius in what constituted one of the most awaited fights between two star brown belt athletes that year[86][87].

Sousa was awarded his black belt by his master Ricardo Vieira in October 2013 and won the IBJJF World No-Gi Championship[88][89][90].

In 2014, Sousa won the IBJJF European Championship in Lisbon [91][92], the IBJJF Pan No-Gi Championship in New York [93][94] and became second at the IBJJF World No-Gi Championship[95]. Sousa won several other international tournaments, including the Dallas International Open[96][97], Las Vegas Spring International Open[98][99], and Rome International Open[100][101].

In 2015, Sousa continued with his track record of competing at international tournaments. He won bronze at the IBJJF World Championship[102], silver at the IBJJF World No-Gi Championship [103], and silver at the UAEJJF Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championships[104]. He won several European tournaments, including the IBJJF European No-Gi Championship[105], Berlin International Open[106], Berlin International Open No-Gi [107], and Rome International Open[108].

In 2016, Sousa won the IBJJF European Championship for the second time as a black belt and for the fourth time overall[109]. Sousa lost by referee decision against André Luis Leite Galvão at the IBJJF World Championship and took home silver[110]. In late 2016 and early 2017, Sousa was absent from the international competition scene while remaining in the United Kingdom to obtain residency status[111], however he competed at the British Nationals [112] and British Nationals No-Gi[113].

In May 2017, Sousa returned to the international competition scene, becoming third in the IBJJF World No-Gi Championship [114], and winning double gold at the IBJJF Pan American No-Gi Championship [115], as well as winning a further seven gold medals and two silver medals at international tournaments in Moscow, Paris and London [116][117][118]. In September 2017, Sousa was a last minute addition to the invitation-only ADCC World Championships, replacing Checkmat teammate Luiz Panza at the -99kg division [119]. With less than 48 hours to travel to Finland and to prepare for one of the biggest tournaments of his career, Sousa surprised spectators when he nabbed a bronze medal, losing against his childhood friend Yuri Simoes in the semifinals [120].

References[edit]

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