By IMMAF.org lead writer, Jorden Curran
The Swedish MMA Federation has confirmed its 2018 team of 33 athletes who will represent the nation at IMMAF championships throughout the year.
At IMMAF championship events, nations are permitted to register two athletes per weight bracket. Selection by SMMAF is based on results of the Swedish National Amateur Championships which concluded in December of 2017 – more details HERE. The top-2 ranked athletes in each division receive priority invites to the national team. Athletes ranked third and fourth are invited as alternates.
Sweden are currently the world’s number-1 ranked nation under IMMAF and occupy the top individual position in 8 out of a 14 possible weight divisions, in addition to Heavyweight world champion Irman Smajic occupying the number-1 pound-for-pound spot.
The national squad is made up of both exciting newcomers and IMMAF veterans from close to 20 Swedish MMA clubs and will benefit from the collective input of 10 coaches, also accompanied by team managers Christer Ringblom (SMMAF Captain) and Anders Ohlsson (National Team Coach).
Smajic returns to the team, listed as Super-Heavyweight for a second time following the 2017 European Open where took the gold medal in the +265lb bracket. He makes way for team-mate Anton Andersson to feature in the -265lb Heavyweight division.
Women’s Strawweight Anna Astvik also returns for 2018 following her gold medal triumph at the 2017 IMMAF World Championships in Bahrain. Other former medalists set for the 2018 IMMAF campaign include former world silver medalist Anja Saxmark, 2016 European Open champion Renato Vidovic, 2016 Africa Open champion Hoger Salih and no.1 IMMAF ranked Men’s Lightweight Tobias Harila.
Full Swedish National MMA Team for 2018 shown below.
IMMAF 2018 events schedule:
2018 IMMAF Oceania Open Championships
16 – 18 March, Melbourne – Australia
2018 IMMAF European Championships
PLUS IMMAF Junior European Open Championships (age 18 -21)
17 – 23 June, Bucharest – Romania
2018 IMMAF Africa Open Championships
24 – 26 May, Johannesburg – South Africa
2018 IMMAF Asian Open Championships
PLUS IMMAF Junior MMA World Championships (age 18 -21)
3 – 8 September, Beijing – China
2018 IMMAF World Championships
November, Manama – Bahrain