FIVB Volleyball Club World Championships 2012

Press release

Brazil Olympic silver medallist Rodrigão to compete in Club World Championships in Qatar

Rodrigao will be joined on Al-Rayyan's roster by Bulgarian brothers Georgi and Valentin Bratoev

Lausanne, Switzerland, September 14, 2012 – When Brazilian club Sada Cruzeiro heads to Doha for the Club World Championships in October, a familiar face will be there waiting for them. Veteran centre Rodrigão will be in the competition playing for Qatar-based Al-Rayyan.

After winning the silver medal in the London Olympics with the Brazilian national team, Rodrigão was hired by Al-Rayyan, one of two teams that will represent the host country in the tournament.

The 2.04 metre 33-year-old is best known as a fixture in the last three Olympics, winning gold in Athens in 2004, silver in Beijing 2008 and silver again in London 2012. He was happy to get a chance to join the race for the second consecutive year.

“I played with SESI in 2011 and was very pleased with the experience,” said Rodrigão. “The prestige of the Club World Championships is growing every season and I hope to do a good job for Al-Rayyan.”

Rodrigão’s first stint with the Qatari club will be a brief one. He will join up with the rest of the team about two weeks before the start of the championship and return to Brazil after the end of the tournament.

“I'm keeping up with daily fitness training here in Santos City (where I live), but in the next few days I will start working with the team and getting ready for the Championship,” he said.

Rodrigão will be able to give his new comrades tips on at least one of the teams they will face – Al-Rayyan has been drawn in the same pool as Brazil’s Sada Cruziero, who will come in fresh off winning the South American Club Championship. They will play against Al-Rayyan October 14.

“They have a spectacular cast and everything has been gaining for them in recent years," said Rodrigão. His side will need to be up to the challenge, and fortunately he will not have to carry the team alone.

Al-Rayyan also hired brothers Georgi and Valentin Bratoev, who were standout players in Bulgaria’s impressive showing in the World League and Olympics this year.

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