consecutive World Championship title to Adriana and Shelda
Klagenfurt, Austria, 5 August - Speaking after their triumphant victory to retain the women's championship title, Adriana and Shelda, the dynamic Brazilian duo who put out fellow Brazilians Sandra Pires and Tatiana Minello, said it had been a very good tournament for them.
"We had to play hard in all our matches here, because the single elimination system meant we couldn't lose any," Adriana said. She paid tribute to her partner, saying Shelda had played well all week and defended particularly well in Saturday's final.
The second-placed Pires was generous in her praise of the winning team. "They played much better than we did," she said.
Bronze medallists, Eva Celbova and Sona Dosoudilova of the Czech Republic earlier knocked out Americans Elaine Youngs and Barbra Fontana in straight sets, said they were very happy with the result.
"This is certainly the best win of our careers," said Celbova. "The fans really inspired us. When you are out there and play before a big crowd like that you have to play well," her partner added.
The 2001 World Championships attracted some 100,000 spectators over the five days of competition, including
visits by the FIVB President Dr. Ruben Acosta and his wife Malu, the governor of Carinthia, Dr. Joerg Haider and Formula I legend Niki Lauda.
The party atmosphere reached fever pitch on Sunday as fans screamed their local war cry "That's the way.. .. uh huh.. We like it.. .. uh huh.." and put their special Austrian stamp on the proceedings by performing the unique "slow wave" to the tune of the Blue Danube Waltz.
"It's amazing! It's not like this anywhere else in the world," said Loiola of Brazil, looking around at the animated crowd. "Here in Austria they really know how to cheer."