2018-08-19 16:51:00 CET
The Brazilian star becomes youngest player to win the World Tour Finals
Duda Lisboa celebrated her 20th birthday during the Vienna Major and her present might have been delayed for 18 days, but she wouldn’t care.
The Brazilian rising star accomplished the most important result of her beach volleyball career with partner Agatha Bednarcuzuk as she topped the podium of the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Finals Hamburg 2018 presented by Vodafone on Sunday.
It was the first victory of the world’s number one team, which has just finished its second season, in a Beach Major Series event. And, in the prodigy’s own words, certainly the most important of the five World Tour gold medals she has won.
“This is certainly the biggest victory of my career,” Duda exclaimed after he final. “Except for the Olympics and the World Championships, this is biggest beach volleyball tournament in the planet.”
“It’s a special victory for us and it’s the first time I win a World Tour event outside Brazil. I kept thinking about it and after we lost the final in Moscow our coach said that my time would come and I kind of let it go. I’m glad it happened here.”
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At 20, Duda becomes the youngest player to not only win the World Tour Finals, but also any Beach Major Series event. Her massive professional success is just an extension of her remarkable youth career, which saw her win a total of five age-group World Championships besides of the a gold medal in the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympics.
“Sometimes it’s hard to believe in all that’s happening because things have changed so fast,” she added. “I started my beach volleyball career at a very young age and it’s kind of scary how much has happened since then. I try not to overthink about the future, but I’m definitely working very hard for it to be as good as possible.”
Her second World Tour Finals appearance is another experience the defender wants to use as a lesson for the future. Despite their triumph in Hamburg, Duda didn’t take the struggling moments she had during the tournament for granted. On the contrary, she wants to build from them.
“I still feel I lack experience in some moments,” she admitted. “In the last points of the final I was nervous because I couldn’t side out but Agatha helped me a lot. She told me to take it as any other point in any other match and it worked. She was amazing.”
Duda’s constant and fast progress can turn the Brazilians in one of the most dominating teams in the world in the future. But for now, all they want is to enjoy their victory, especially after taking silver last year.
“Coming to the venue this morning we thought it was another opportunity for us to win here after getting silver last year,” Agatha commented. “It was one of the toughest tournaments I’ve ever played and I’m very proud about how we performed here, especially Duda. It was such a great way to finish a very good season and now we just want to celebrate, but we will come back stronger next year.”