Gabriel Silva targets World Pro title: “ready for it”

Gabriel is one of today’s leading orange belts and will compete in the prestigious event in Abu Dhabi

Gabriel Silva is a young Jiu-Jitsu prodigy. Photo: KH Visions

Gabriel Silva is a young Jiu-Jitsu prospect in the United States and will be in action in the next few days in search of a big title. The orange belt will be competing at the World Pro in Abu Dhabi and is motivated to shine at the most important championship on the AJP calendar.

Gabriel has refined Jiu-Jitsu and is constantly evolving under the guidance of his father, Professor Vicente Júnior. Vicente is directly responsible for building Gabriel’s game and they have built a successful partnership on and off the mats. 

The American has already won renowned IBJJF events, such as Pan Kids, European Kids and the American Nationals, but he also wants to write his name at AJP.

Gabriel comments on his preparation for the World Pro

In an interview with VF Comunica, Gabriel Silva detailed the adjustments he made to arrive in Abu Dhabi sharp.

“Preparations for the World Pro have been similar to my training for the other IBJJF grand slam tournaments. I’ve been training as much as I can and working out a few days a week. I have also been on a diet to make sure I make weight. Just like every tournament, I’m training hard to be ready for this competition.” said the orange belt.

Gabriel Silva listed his Jiu-Jitsu strengths in relation to his opponents and added that he intends to use his experience in the main events to his advantage.

“I think each competitor has a different style. Even if two opponents have the same game, the style of how they execute the techniques is different. So I think my style is different from my opponents, being a mixture of strength and technique. I also believe that I have a little more knowledge than some of my opponents in certain areas. Maybe I know about the high level of competition, because I’ve competed in the Pan, Brazilian and other important events,” commented the young athlete.

Gabriel Silva estará em ação no World Pro 2023. Foto: KH Visions
Gabriel Silva will be in action at the World Pro 2023. Photo: KH Visions

New challenge in Jiu-Jitsu

The orange belt will have another big test in Jiu-Jitsu, but it will be in conditions he is not used to. Gabriel mentioned the main differences between competing in the United States and Abu Dhabi, but also stressed that he is prepared.

“I think the main difference about Europe, the USA, and Abu Dhabi is the environment and weather. I don’t know much of the environment in Europe outside of Dublin in the late fall, but it feels similar to competing here at home. Here it is very cold and when I went to Dublin, it felt pretty similar. In other parts of the USA I’ve compete at, it basically feels the same. But I think that Abu Dhabi may have a similar temperature and dryness as a summer in Las Vegas. I have struggled in Las Vegas with the dry heat and weather, but because of having a very minimal time in the city before competing. However if I have enough time to get a feel for the weather, I can be fine. It’ll be similar for Abu Dhabi, as it as a desert. I don’t think I can compare much about Abu Dhabi, though, because I haven’t been there yet. I do know too that there will be more of a variety on where people are from. In Europe, I saw people from all over the continent. For Abu Dhabi, I’m gonna see people from all of the world”, added Gabriel.

Partnership with his father

Vicente is Gabriel’s father, professor and mentor. The black belt is a key player in the growth of his son’s production. Gabriel highlighted how important working with his father has been for his development.

“I think my father’s honesty is the characteristic that most helps my Jiu-Jitsu evolve. He has great teaching skills ans is also sincere. He’s the most honest person I know. If you do something wrong in a roll, he’ll tell you without hesitation. He doesn’t pretend to say “good job” if you’ve done something terrible. So his honesty helps me understand that I’m doing something wrong and that I need to fix it,” explained Gabriel.

Gabriel Silva comemora ao vencer a luta. Foto: KH Visions
Gabriel Silva celebrates winning the fight. Photo: KH Visions

Gabriel predicts tough battles at the World Pro

The young competitor analyzed his World Pro bracket and predicted a tough road to the top. 

“I think this division is going to be similar to my division Brazil. I think my opponents will have an intense drive, similar to the competitors in Brazil. My division will be tough because of this. Even if they don’t have that same drive, they are still there to win, and they will do their best to make sure they do. But I usually don’t worry about my divisions too much. I know what I’m going to do, I’m not worried about them. If stuff on the mat goes south, I will know what to do to get into a better position. But no matter what, it’ll be tough, and I’m ready for it”, told Gabriel.

Gabriel is an example of an athlete on and off the mats. He has a singular dedication and is an obstinate young man. He mentioned the activities he likes to do off the mats, but stressed that he always watches his old fights in order to evolve.

“Off the mats, I’m usually either working out, at school, or having fun on video games on my free time. When I workout, it’s usually to improve my strength and a little bit of cardio, and to lose weight. The strength definitely helps me with techniques and other moves that need it or can be complemented by it. Sometimes, when I have my free time, I’ll watch back old matches to study them, see my mistakes that I can fix, and work to improve them.

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Written by Gabriel Almada

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