Brazil come into the World Grand Champions Cup on a high note, having enjoyed
great success around the world in 2009.
The team qualified
for the tournament by winning its 27th South American title by
defeating Argentina in the final in Colombia, and recently swept reigning
Olympic champions USA in five straight friendly matches in preparation for the
Grand Champions Cup.
In the summer,
Brazil won an epic five-set encounter with Serbia in Belgrade during the final
of the 2009 World League. That gold helped Brazil match Italy as the most successful
team at the tournament — both have now won the World league eight times each.
Brazil also lays
claim to being the most successful team at the World Grand Champions Cup,
having medaled in each competition: gold in 1997 and 2005 and silver in 1993
nicknamed "Bernardinho," was born in Rio de Janeiro. The 50-year-old
was in charge of the Women's National Team from 1994-2000, and in 2001 became
head coach of the Brazilian Men's National Team.
Rezende played Volleyball from 1979-1986 in Rio de Janeiro. As a player, he won
the bronze medal in the 1981 World Cup in Japan and silver medals at the FIVB
World Championship in Argentina in 1982 and the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games.
In 1988, he stopped playing to work as assistant coach to Bebeto de Freitas at
the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul. Two years later, he became the head coach of
the Perugia Women's team in Italy, where he stayed until 1992. In 1993, still
in Italy, he took charge of Modena. By the end of that season, Rezende returned
to Brazil and in 1994 started his victorious work as head coach of the
That year, Brazil placed second in the World Championship and won the World
Grand Prix. In 1996, the team won the bronze medal at the Atlanta Olympic Games
and the gold medal at the World Grand Prix. In 1998 Rezende led the Brazilians
to a South American title, earned qualification for the World Championship and
won bronze in the World Grand Champions Cup in Japan.
In 1999, Bernardinho won the gold medal at the Pan American Games in Winnipeg,
a silver medal in the World Grand Prix, gold in the South American Championship
for the third time, and bronze at the World Cup. In 2000, he led Brazil to
third place in the World Grand Prix and at the Olympic Games in Sydney.
After this success Rezende accepted the challenge of leading the Brazilian Men
in 2001. The choice could not have been better. Bernardinho led the team to
memorable victories including first place in the 2001 and 2003 editions of the
World League and the gold medal at the 2002 World Championship.
In 2003, Bernardinho’s star shone even stronger. He guided the team to titles
in the World League and the World Cup, and bronze at the Pan American Games in
In July 2004, Brazil claimed their fourth World League title. In August, the
team won its second Olympic gold medal, in Athens. Bernardinho returned at the
end of the year to the Superliga to coach Rexona-Ade.
In 2005, still coaching the Brazilian Men, he earned another four international
medals: gold in the World League, gold at the South American Championship and
gold at the FIVB World Grand Champions Cup in Japan. He also won silver at the
In 2006, Bernardinho won the World League for the fifth time, and the FIVB
World Championship for the second time.
The success didn't let up in 2007, with victories in the World League, the
World Cup, the Pan American Games and the South American Championship. He also
led a young team to second place at the America's Cup.
Last year, Bernardinho steered the team to fourth in the World League and
another Olympic medal, this time silver.
In 2009, Rezende
brought in several new faces to play alongsideOlympians Giba, Sergio and Rodrigao. Together
they wrote their names in the country’s Volleyball history books by winning an
epic World League gold medal match against Serbia in Belgrade. The victory meant
Brazil is now tied with Italy as the team with most gold medals (8) at the
Most recently, Brazil won its 27th South American title by
defeating Argentina in the final, thus qualifying for the World Grand Champions