A Double Dose Of Gold For Brazil In Volleyball
By Dialogo July 24, 2011
The bitter dispute between Brazil and China for overall leadership in the medals table at the 5th Military World Games serving as a dramatic backdrop in the battle for gold in volleyball on Saturday, July 23. In the women’s, the Chinese went ahead. But the Brazilians re-took the lead in the second set, paving the way for a quick victory in the men’s team 3 sets to 0.
Undefeated during the Games, the men’s and women’s volleyball teams proved their superiority before a 10,000 fans packed at the Maracanãzinho. Before going to the winner’s podium, the athletes celebrated the victory with military honors.
Once Alexander Marczewski, sealed the win for Brazil, the team captain, Sergeant Anderson de Oliveira Rodrigues, led the formation of two teams in traditional calisthenics by executing 10 push-ups.
Relieved after the victory, the coach of the women’s team, Helio Greiner, acknowledged that the pressure to win the gold affected the team’s performance until the middle of the second set.
“We got very tense, with the pressure for the gold medal, and the medal race with China for overall leadership. I myself had never coached a Brazil team before a packed house of this size,” said Greiner.
After dropping the first set 27-25, the Brazilian players secured the top spot after winning the following three sets (25-16, 25-17 and 25-12).
The game on the men’s side was less stressful as they swept their opponent in all three sets with scores of 25-16, 25-15 and 25-15.
“I was wondering how the stadium would sound with everyone shouting,” said Soldier Paulo Vitor da Silva, whose performance thrilled the audience.
Brazil will compete in the World Military Volleyball championships in Iran in 2012, but coach Flavio Marinho, said it was too early to tell if he would bring the same team.
In beach volleyball, the Brazilian duo also dominated the event, winning gold and bronze in the male and female category. On Saturday morning, Sergeants Angela and Val defeated the Chinese team of Liu and Fan by 2 sets to 0. The scores of 21-10 and 21-7 showed a dominant display.
“Although we made the game look easy, the Chinese are a quality opponent,” said Angela, voted best player of the tournament. The bronze went to Rachel and Camilla.
In the men’s, another meeting between Brazil and China and another victory for the hosts. However, Jan and Bernardo had a little more trouble with Liu and Zhou, winning 2-0, but with scores of 22-20 and 21-18.
“The atmosphere was great,” said Jan, voted best player of the tournament and the brother of Sergeant Rogerio Para, who won bronze alongside Roberto and announced his retirement from competition.