Lausanne, Switzerland, June 22, 2011 - Olympic champion Kerri Pottharst says world champions Juliana and Larrisa will be the team to beat for the rest of the year, following their inspirational triumph at the FIVB Swatch World Championships Rome 2011 powered by smart on Sunday.
The 2000 Olympic Games gold medal winner and 1996 Olympic Games bronze medallist said in her FIVB blog that the Brazilian top seeds showed outstanding character to fight back from four points down in the final against USA’s three-time world champions Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh to claim the title for the first time ever.
“My hat goes off to Julianna and Larissa for their great win in the World Championships,” Pottharst said. “Although they nearly lost it in the final set it took a lot for them to dig deep and close the four point gap. This was a sign of how much self belief they have right now. Most teams would’ve thrown in the towel at that point, especially against the calibre of Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor, but the Brazilians just wouldn’t give up.
“After this win and their results over the past three years, Julianna and Larissa will be extremely determined to not only make it to London 2012, but to take home the gold. They were right on target leading up to Beijing in 2008, when Julianna tore her crutiate ligament, so now I’m sure they will be doing everything they can to make up for that. This win will give them another massive boost of confidence. I predict that they will be hard to beat for the remainder of this year.”
Read Kerri Pottharst’s full FIVB blog here