Gym 01 aces to rub shoulders with one of world’s best BJJ grapplers

Gym 01 fighters Anthony Jayakody, left, and Elliot Hoye training. Picture: Habibur Rahman
Gym 01 fighters Anthony Jayakody, left, and Elliot Hoye training. Picture: Habibur Rahman
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Fighters at a Portsmouth gym will rub shoulders with one of the world’s best jiu-jitsu grapplers.

Craig Jones hosts a two-hour seminar at Southsea’s Gym 01 this Sunday.

The Australian black belt, who holds the Polaris Middleweight Championship after defeating former UFC ace Jake Shields in February, will give those involved an insight into his submission game.

Colin Howells, Gym 01’s head Brazilian jiu-jitsu coach, regards Jones as the biggest name in the sport.

And he feels participants will benefit significantly from the seminar.

Howells said: ‘It’s huge for us. We’ve had lots of high-level guys in our gym but as a jiu-jitsu coach it’s important for us to have a guy like Craig come down.

‘Craig had a grappling match in Manchester a few weeks ago.

‘Before he goes back to Australia, he wants to go into a few gyms in the UK and hold some seminars.

‘He’s the biggest name in jiu-jitsu. You could call him the Anthony Joshua or Lewis Hamilton of our sport – he’s up there as the biggest name in terms of grappling.

‘He came out of nowhere, beat some big names last year and cemented his name at the top.

‘At the moment, the trend is leg locks – all the different leg attacks, knee bars and toe holds.

‘His leg lock game is definitely one of the best in the world. The top one or two in my opinion.

‘He trains out in Danaher camp in New York and you could say they’re the best no-gi grappling team in the world at the minute.

‘His leg lock game is great but he’s good in other areas as well so we’ll try to get him to show us other tricks and tips.’

Howells admitted he’s had to cap the numbers on the session because it has proved so popular. 

The Gym 01 coach added: ‘We’ll definitely be having people from all over the place to visit.

‘I’ve actually had to cap the numbers so we have enough room on the mat.

‘I don’t want to have too many people there. The people who attend will really want to gain from this experience.

‘I’ll be taking part in it as well and I’m always learning. I learn from my students as well as everything else.

‘It’s going to be really good to have him.

‘I brought jiu-jitsu to Portsmouth in 2004 and we were the first club.

‘There are three clubs now but ours is the original.

‘Whenever I can bring people over I maintain the same quality that we already have.’