Jermal flies Bermuda fly in China
San Shou fighter Jermal Woolridge will face the Netherlands Landeertjan Mulder in his first round match at the sixth Sanda World Cup in Wuyishan, China tomorrow.
The Bermudian is competing in the +90kg division.
Woolridge tipped the scale at 225.6lbs at the official weigh-in on the eve of his fight with past Wushu World Champion Mulder who is a wild card replacement for Koreas Sang Jung Lee, who was unable to make the competition due to conflicting commitments.
Woolridge qualified for the tournament World Cup after claiming the bronze medal at last years 11th World Wushu Championships in Turkey. He was the first Bermudian to medal at this event.
The winner of Woolridges first round match will face either Chen Yanzhao (China) or Rudkovskyi Oleksandr (Ukraine) in the October 25 final.
Woolridge prepared for the World Cup at the Extreme Couture MMA Gym in Toronto and worked on his strength and conditioning locally with new trainer Kevin Kempcke.
The 14-year martial arts veteran is confident of success in China but said he is wary there was no margin for error in the single elimination tournament.
Its a knockout tournament so only the winners advance, he said. And I basically want to try and minimise mistakes and come out uninjured.
Bermuda coach Garon Wilkinson believes Lees absence will work in Woolridges favour.
When I was informed that Mulder would be getting the wild card I thought this would be an ideal first round match up for Jermal, he said. I do not think he (Mulder) was in the kind of shape Im used to seeing him in.
In this type of tournament fighters gain confidence as they advance through the rounds and with Chinas Yanzhou clearly the favourite it would be great to face him or Ukraines Oleksandr in the finals.
The remaining first round match involving Yanzhou and Oleksandr is a rematch of the final of the previous World Championships where the former emerged as the winner.
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