The first Polaris Squads was an unqualified success and the promotion wasted no time in announcing that they would stick to the format moving forward, but their next event would be contested in the gi instead. The UK-based promotion announced the news on their official Instagram account and although no date has been revealed for the upcoming event, the last one took place within a little over six weeks of it first being announced. It saw Team UK and Ireland earn an incredibly close victory over the opposing team, made of a group of representatives from all over the rest of Europe.
The rules for the squads format may seem confusing at first but are relatively simple when put into practice. Two teams of eight grapplers compete in a winner-stays-on series of five minute rounds, for a total of eighty minutes with a half-time break. The teams are split into under 75kg and under 95kg weight-classes with every submission scored being worth a point, or three if a lighter competitor submits an opponent from the heavier category.
The vast majority of both team’s representatives from the first event are almost exclusively no gi competitors and Polaris will likely want a fresh look to the next edition so it seems unlikely many, if any of the previous athletes will make a reappearance. Instead, if they follow the same two teams then they have the possibility of featuring elite Norwegians like Tommy Langaker and Espen Mathiesen, or Anthony Guy De Oliveira from France. Team UK & Ireland would have plenty to choose from too, even choosing some familiar faces from the original style of Polaris events like Bryn Jenkins or Craig Ewers.
The full play-by-play and live results for the first Polaris Squads can be found here, and we’ll be on hand to deliver the same for the gi version of the event.