2017-02-14 17:44:00 CEST
Players are pushing one another at the national tour
Brazil’s beach volleyball team’s performance at the Fort Lauderdale Major has been quite impressive. The South Americans won four out of six medals, the only other countries to make it atop the podium was Germany and the USA, each winning bronze respectively. Three out of the five men´s teams finished in the top five and all five women’s teams made it to the top 10.
Brazil has always been very good at beach volleyball, the biggest surprise at the season start was that all the participating Brazilian teams were new. They got together just after the Rio Olympics. With exceptions being ladies team and Fort Lauderdale gold medalists: Talita Antunes and Larissa Franca and also 2016 Olympic champions: Alison Cerutti and Bruno Schmidt.
Passando hoje pelo Rio de Janeiro, o dia foi de entrevistas e uma visita ao escritório da @nbabrasil Muito bacana! E obrigado pelas camisetas de #Lakers e #Nets
See this Instagram post by @alison_brunoschmidt * 2,109 likes
“We have 10 very very good players in Brazil, both men and women, we changed teams in an attempt to get the most out of them and that’s what’s happening,” explains Maria Antonelli , 32. Antonelli’s former partner, 29-year-old Lili Maestrini joined up with Josi Alves, 38. Like Larissa/Talita, they are also an experienced duo. On the topic of new female duos; there is also new team: Barbara Seixas (29) and Fernanda Alves (31). Fernanda was a former indoor volleyball player who made the switch to beach in 2013, she still has a lot of potential for development.
Agatha educates the Newbie
Agatha Bednarczuk (33) gave her team a youthful edge by picking up 18-year-old Eduarda Santos Lisboa. Eduarda, 2016 Under-19 and Under-21 World Championship winner and the Olympic silver medalist had an impressive debut at Fort Lauderdale Major. These ladies have a bright future ahead of them being coached by ‘Big Mama’ Leticia who also coached the legendary Emanuel Rego.
“Leticia is extremely important to Brazil,” explained Antonelli who has been working with her over the past three years. “But she had a very good opportunity to work with this incredible team, so I gave her the liberty to do so because she deserves to stay in the top three.
“She is very smart on the court, her practice method is so robust and she studies other teams too. What she does for her players is incredible, she works a lot like a mother would.”
“Our national tour is the secret”
All the teams have good coaches, but the guarantee of success for Brazilian teams is the availability of a competitive national tournament series filled with really good players.
“The Brazilian tour gives the players a great advantage,” says former World Tour player Paulo Moreira da Costa, “First, because they start to play before the other countries and second, because the level of competition on the tour is very high.”
Agatha/Duda and Larissa/Talita already competed against one another at the João Pessoa national finals two weeks ago. Aside from the top teams mentioned already, one shouldn't forget about all the other great athletes who compete nationally like Elize Maia/Taiana Lima, the Salgado-Sisters, Juliana Felisberta and Maria Antonelli to name but a few.
“The secret to our success is our national tournament series as it has always been at a difficult level” says Antonelli.
Finaaaaaaaaaaaallllll!!!! Galera amanhã estaremos jogando a nossa primeira final. Que delicia estrear em Jampa!! Fiquem ligados: Sportv as 10:00 contra Larissa e Talita!! Manda aquela energia positiva pra gente uhuuuuuuuu @santoslisboaduda #marinhadobrasil @timeagathaeduda
See this Instagram post by @agatha_rippel * 1,340 likes
The same applies for the men: Fort Lauderdale Champions Alvaro Filho (26) /Saymon Barbosa (23) have already won two and obtained three silver medals at national tournaments between September and December. Andre Stein, 22, was taught by the experienced 42-year-old Ricardo Santos, before he won silver with Evandro, 26, at their first tournament together in Fort Lauderdale. Magnificent server Evandro had also collected a few top five results with ex-teammate Pedro Solberg (30), who finished 17th with Guto (23) at the Fort Lauderdale Major.
Na segunda etapa do Circuito Brasileiro juntos, conquistamos o nosso primeiro título, aqui em Brasília neste domingo. Estamos muito felizes com esse resultado alcançado depois de ser vice-campeões da etapa de Campo Grande. Queremos agradecer a todos pela torcida, por todas as mensagens positivas enviadas. Essa vitória ajuda a nos fortalecer ainda mais para ir conseguindo os objetivos traçados. Ótimo dia para vocês. Álvaro Filho e Saymon
See this Instagram post by @alvarofilho2 * 254 likes
Four Brazilian national events are scheduled between February and April in 2017. That means that when all the other countries compete at the three-star event in Kish Island (men only) and/or are having a competition break for a few weeks – the Brazilian beach volleyball elite will meet on February 14-16 in Maceió, on March 14-16 in Aracaju and on April 4-6 April in Vitória, all to play against one another.