Brevard's Smith earns silver, bronze at the 2021 IBJJF World Master Championship in Vegas

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Brevard's Thomas Smith poses after earning a silver and a bronze medal at the 2021 IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu Championship held Nov. 13 in Las Vegas.
Brevard's Thomas Smith poses after earning a silver and a bronze medal at the 2021 IBJJF Jiu-Jitsu Championship held Nov. 13 in Las Vegas.

Brevard's Thomas Smith competed in the 2021 International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation Championship on Nov. 13 in Las Vegas and ended up earning two medals.

He finished the tournament with a silver medal in the Super Heavyweight division (under 222 pounds) but was very close to capturing the gold. In the finals match, which lasted five minutes, he finished in a stalemate with his opponent with the final score being 0-0. When a match ends in a tie, the referee makes the final decision, and the referee decided to give the gold to his opponent.

Despite not getting the gold, Smith went on to earn another podium finish as he earned a bronze medal in the Open (ultimate) Class.

The annual event is considered the pinnacle of the IBJJF season. The IBJJF hosts events on six continents and represents more than 6,500 black belts and close to 100,000 competitors worldwide.

Smith has been competing all year and his two medals at the IBJJF were a culmination of his 2021 competitions, he said. On Sept. 5 he won two gold medals at the Pan-Am Tournament.

Smith finished the year ranked No. 2 in the world by the IBJJF in the Super Heavyweight 55-and-over division. He's also ranked No. 2 in the Open Class and ranked No. 2 overall for blue belts over 55 years of age.

Smith trains out of the local club, Fight to Win of Asheville, in Arden. Professor Brad Hannah heads the Asheville club. Smith, a first-degree black belt in Judo, is the head Judo instructor for Yama Judo at Fight to Win. He said he wanted to give a special thanks to Josh Heath, Sandusky Parris and all the other members who helped with his training

This article originally appeared on Hendersonville Times-News: Brevard's Smith earns silver, bronze at the 2021 IBJJF World Master Championship in Vegas