Pictured: SAFEJAWZ co-founder George Dyer presents David Rivera with the Golden Mouthguard Award.
By IMMAF.org lead writer, Jorden Curran
Panama’s David Rivera is set to enter his second international championship tournament under the IMMAF banner, the 23-year-old now being confirmed for the Men’s Bantamweight division of the 2018 IMMAF Oceania Open Championships next month in Melbourne, Australia.
Representing Panama’s National Association of Mixed Martial Arts (ANMMA), Rivera made his debut on the IMMAF platform last year at the 2017 World Championships in Bahrain. While the nation’s sole representative eventually succumbed to defeat at the hands of Frenchman Florian Moreau, Rivera went on to receive an all new and prestigious honor, awarded for stand-out commitment to the sport and embodiment of the good sporting values of amateur MMA.
During the World Championships Finals, he was announced as the first ever recipient of the SAFEJAWZ Golden Mouthguard Award, in association with IMMAF’s exclusive mouthguard provider. Rivera was selected from a final group of 10 athletes, each originally nominated by their national federation.
David Rivera is a life-long martial artist which kept him on the straight and narrow whilst growing up in the high crime area of San Miguelito in Panama. For several years David has been offering not-for-profit MMA classes in his local area whilst achieving a Bachelor’s Degree in Law. David perfectly represents the views of the Panamanian Association of MMA in that the sport must provide more than a sports function. It must also offer a social function that has a positive impact on society. The values that David holds dear of hard work, culture, education and social hope are the exact values that must surround MMA as a future Olympic Sport.
In Australia, Rivera will be back in action for his second shot at what would be a historic triumph for the nation of Panama. IMMAF’s inaugural Oceania Open Championships takes place from 16-18 March at the Arnold Sports Festival in Melbourne.
For more tournament details on the IMMAF Oceania Open visit MyNextMatch.com