Brazil’s Eduarda (14): If all goes well, we will be the champions
On Friday, on the last day of pool play at the FIVB U19 World Championships, Eduarda and her partner Taina Silva Bigi won their pool with three straight wins.
“We came here to win the World Championships. If all goes well, we will be the champions”, she said after winning their last match 2-0 (21-17 24-22) against Dutch Joy Stubbe and Marloes Hesselink.
“This has been a good experience, we have three wins in a tournament with a very good level, with strong teams and we put our faith in God that everything will go right. Taina and I are playing well, it is a wonderful feeling.”
Changing partners after silver
After winning silver at the U23 in Myslowice with 22-year old Thais Rodrigues Ferreira, she teamed up with 17-year old Taina for the U21 in Umag a few weeks ago, where they finished at a disappointing 9th place.
“It was my first tournament with Taina and the German team we lost to was very good. It was 15-13 in the tiebreak.”
In Porto Eduarda seems to be more relaxed and she and Taina play better. “Here there is no pressure because we did not win a medal in Umag. And I feel more at home here in Porto, because everyone speaks Portuguese and more people are cheering for us.”
Beach volleyball legend Jackie Silva, who is in Porto as a coach for the Jamaican teams, knows Eduarda well.
“I coached her in Brazil last year, but I have known her since she was a little girl. Her mother also played on the Brazilian Tour and used to bring her along. Ever since she was five years old she was playing beach volleyball. I think that is one of the reasons she is playing above her age.”
‘It all comes natural to her’
Silva still sees little things of the young Eduarda in her current play. “The way she is dinking the ball, like she used to do as a little child. But it is also the way she plays, without pressure and with fun. It all comes natural to her.”
Eduarda is one of Brazil’s biggest talents, but the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016 might come a bit early according to the coaches. “I think they are preparing me for 2020, not for Rio”, Eduarda said. Silva does not agree. “They would be fools.”
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