The Spyder Invitational 2019 takes place this coming weekend and sees two different brackets running at the same time. With a -100kg and -76kg tournament being run, we’ll see two champions crowned at opposite ends of the weighing scales. The event takes place in Korea and will see some of the best competitors around fight for a share of the $250,000 prize money. Below, we’ll take a look at how the brackets shake up and who’s got the best chance of flying home a hell of a lot richer.
Johnatha Alves v Shane Jamil Hill-Taylor
Edwin Najmi v Matheus Gabriel
Gabriel Arges v Levi Jones
Matheus Lutes v Inseong Jang
Matheus Lutes: Lutes is ran through the previous edition of the -76kg bracket as a brown belt. His first challenge is Inseong Jang and although Jang has had some good results in this competition, I don’t think he’ll be able to stop Lutes’ march to the final. His toughest test then comes in second round against either the Australian phenom, Levi Jones, or the much more experienced, Gabriel Arges. This is when Lutes really needs to pull out all the stops in order to get past his either of these men and book his place in the final.
The other side of the bracket is a lot harder to predict but should see Matheus Gabriel meet Lutes in the final. The Checkmat representative is fresh off winning the worlds earlier this year and should present a difficult challenge for Lutes. I think Lutes edges this one by decision and leaves with the crown.
The Dark Horse
Shane Jamil Hill-Taylor: Taylor won the Spyder Invitational all the way back in 2017 and has had solid results ever since. After winning the IBJJF World Championships last year, his trip to ADCC this year was cut short by Nicky Ryan. He’s got a difficult path to the final as he previously lost to his first opponent, Johnatha Alves. After that he’ll most likely face Matheus Gabriel, who also owns a victory over Taylor.
It’ll be an uphill battle but if anyone can do it, Taylor is the one to pull off the upset here.
Tim Spriggs v Nicholas Meregali
Claudio Calasans v Erberth Santos
Kaynan Duarte v Leandro Lo
Rodolfo Vieira v Anderson Munis
Kaynan Duarte: Kaynan has had a great year other than being surprised by Lachlan Giles and has only lost to one of his potential opponents. If things play out as you’d expect then his hardest challenges here should come in the first round and the final. He’s already beaten Leandro Lo earlier this year and looks poised to repeat that feat. Next he’ll either be facing Vieira, who’s been focusing on an MMA career for the last four years, or Munis, a young brown belt returning for his second appearance at the Spyder Invitational after impressing the first time round.
Neither of these two opponents would be easy but Kaynan is in top form lately. After that, Kaynan should finally meet the man waiting for him on the other side of the bracket. Nicholas Meregali and Kaynan have fought twice already and they’re one apiece. While he has a much clearer path to the title, I think another close match results in Kaynan being crowned the eventual winner.
The Dark Horse
Anderson Munis: One of three brothers who all won the IBJJF Euros at purple belt, Munis has a bright future regardless of this tournament. Prior to being awarded his brown belt, he beat Matheus Diniz and had a close match with Claudio Calasans at the last Spyder Invitational. If he overcomes BJJ legend Rodolfo Vieira in the first round, that will be an amazing achievement in itself.
That being said, you really shouldn’t underestimate Munis’ potential to provide at least one upset.
The rest of this month is packed full of grappling action, For tickets to the upcoming Polaris 12 on 30th November in Newport, South Wales, click here.