FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour

Rio Grand Slam 2016 | 8 - 13 mars 2016

#RioGS


Press release

Obrigado Emanuel!


Beach volleyball thanks Emanuel

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, March 11, 2016 - With cloudy and cooler conditions on Copacabana here Friday, Brazilian beach volleyball player Emanuel Rego played his final FIVB World Tour match with his long-time partner Ricardo Santos.



It was not the story-book ending everyone hoped for as the legendary Brazilians 18th-seeded Emanuel and Ricardo dropped a 2-1 (15-21, 21-16, 15-13) decision in 52 minutes to the Grimalt cousins (Esteban and Marco) of Chile in the first round of men’s elimination play in the $800,000 Rio Grand Slam.

It was FIVB World Tour match No. 1,549 for Emanuel, who started playing on the international circuit in February 1994 when he and his first-ever FIVB partner Aloizio Claudino placed fourth in the Copacabana event. This week’s event was his 255th World Tour event that produced wins No. 1,226 and 1,227.

After the setback and with “Obrigado Emanuel” on the video board, Emanuel addressed the crowd and thanked every family, friend and fan in attendance. As he exited the court, the crying had stopped, but the admiration for Emanuel as a husband, father, ambassador of the sport, player and a gentleman will go on forever.

He stopped for a live interview with national television and proceeded to the mixed zone where he was greeted adoringly by the herd of media to get his final comments as a player and his prospects for the future. His records are numerous as he leaves beach volleyball as the winningest player with 152 recorded gold medal finishes which featured three Olympic medals and three World Championships.

In a way, the other seven men’s matches in the first round of the Rio Grand Slam pale in the big picture. However, for the Grimalt cousins and the rest of the men’s and women’s players in the FIVB World Tour event, the results are important in producing Olympic dreams.

After it was all said and done, Emanuel offered the following for fivb.com:

OPENING COMMENT - “Right now I want to be a normal person, just be ready to do other things. In two months, I will try to do something inside of the confederation of Brazil or the Brazilian Olympic Committee to help the sport to grow again.”

SEEING HIS PICTURE WITH SINJIN - “Yeah, this guy here, he and his teammates of his generation brought me all the way up here. If I finished something 25 years later, it’s just because they built something to play. I remember the first events - they came - because it was like a dream of one kid, a kid about 15 years old, I saw them do something more. They created the sport.”

ON SINJIN SAYING HE'S THE BEST THAT'S EVER BEEN - “Yes, I’m very proud of that but I think I need to share with the other guys because they are more like warriors in the old times. They brought respect to the sport. I came to it in the best part of it. I just walked on the promenade because they built it up back then,”

IF HE WAS PREPARED FOR THE QUICK ENDING - “No I wasn’t. I controlled the game all the time, I thought Chile was not so fired up and then at the end they play with a lot of fire, they served very good. It was a surprise for me as well.”

AND THAT'S WHY IT WAS SO EMOTIONAL? - “Yes, because I thought I had a chance to play another game.”

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