I feel like my new guard strategy is beginning to take shape. I’m able to pull off both the cross sweep and the hook sweep on a fairly regular basis. However, I’m still not consistently remembering to secure my grips before I do the sweep, which means that I’m allowing the person too much freedom of movement to either come back on top, or even pass my guard. I think a little practice will take care of that problem. Tonight, the coach asked me to pick the person I’m most afraid of sparring, because he is so tough. He said that it could alternatively be the most ugly person. I opted for a blue belt that is not too much heavier than me, but very technical. The thing about the more technical guys is that, even if they are not that big, you constantly feel like you’re in danger, no matter what position you’re in. That’s why I chose a smaller blue belt, rather than someone larger but less technical. Anyway, I ended up not doing too badly against him. Even though he ended up sweeping me, and passing my guard, I managed to keep him at bay for most of the match. I think if I had paid more attention to my grips, I might have even been able to get back on top. I swept him a couple of times, but without the grips, I couldn’t take advantage of the situation.