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Chilean Cousins Claim Big Payday

The Chilean cousins of Esteban (right) and Marco Grimalt have their biggest payday in their Beach Volleyball career with a ninth at the Transavia Grand Slam in The Hague.

The Hague, The Netherlands, July 18, 2014 - After seven games at the US$1-million Transavia Grand Slam on the Scheveningen, the Chilean Grimalt cousins are tired.

Marco Grimalt and Esteban Grimalt lost 2-0 (22-20 and 21-19) in round two of the elimination round against fourth-seeded Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Janis Smedins from Latvia late Friday afternoon, but the players from the South American country can look back on a good tournament with a ninth-place finish.

“We played very well, but we we’re tired after seven matches”, said the Marco after dropping the 39-minute match to the reigning FIVB World Tour champions.  With a $14,000 paycheck for placing among the top 12 pairs in the 48-team tournament, the Chileans also had their biggest payday in their Beach Volleyball career.

The cousins were a “bit disappointed” about the loss to “Lion King” Samoilovs and Smedins.  “Overall, we are satisfied with our performance this week,” offered Esteban.  “We had a good tournament, from qualifications to the ninth place.  It’s good for our experience, and we take it step by step.  This is our best result this year in a Grand Slam.  The ultimate goal is to qualify for the Olympics in Rio, 2016.”

The cousins come from a volleyball family.  “Volleyball is a tradition,” explained Esteban.  “It is our passion.”

Marco added that his “father and six brothers all played in the national indoor team of Chile in the eighties.”

The 25-year old Marco and his two-year younger cousin Esteban grew up with the sport.  “We grew up in different cities, but our family is close,” offered Marco.

Five years ago the Chilean couple played their first match, said Coach Carlos Garrido, who played on the FIVB World Tour in the 1990s and amassed six podium placements for Brazil during his international Beach Volleyball career.   “They know each other very well and they never were apart since they were 16,” said Garrido, who has been the cousin’s trainer since January 2013.

Marco and Esteban are happy that they play together.  “We know each other our whole life,” said Marco.  “We grew up together.”

“It is good to play together,” added Esteban.  “It is always like home.”

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