(ANS – Rio de Janeiro) – A few days before the opening of the XXX Olympic Games, from Brazil comes confirmation that the Salesian past pupil Maria Elisa Antonelli, who studied at the “São José” Institute in Resende, will be among the members of the Brazilian Beach Volley-Ball team.
The official announcement was made on Thursday 28 June at a Press Conference in Rio de Janeiro, by the President of the Conferedeção Brasileira Volley, Ary Graça Filho (CBV). Miss Antonelli will team up with her usual companion in the doubles Talita Antunes da Rocha, with whom last July she won at a tournament on the Womens Beach Volley World Circuit.
“We are going to London with a real chance of a Gold Medal with all four pairs. Certainly the unexpected can always happen but the preparations have been excellent and we are ready to see the results of all our efforts,” the SBV President declared. There are in fact four Brazilian pairs two womens and two mens.
For Maria Elisa, it is a dream come true. “I watched the Pekin Olympics from the couch. This year I am taking part! I am among the best in Brazil so it is a great joy but also a great responsibility, in that it is not just me and Talita, but we are representing our country in the most important of international sports competitions” she said in an exclusive interview on the site of the “São José” Institute.
She also spoke about the Salesian contribution to her successful sports career. “Its a different sort of school offering the students a privileged path and it was there that I first began playing volley-ball. Its amusing to think that I always tried to be the best in the competitions in School and now I can try to be the best in the London Olympics!”
She also realises that she is a role model for the young people at the Salesian school and feel the responsibility. “It is a further encouragement to work harder for victory. I am very proud and grateful for all those who have been and are part of my development in volley-ball. If I have got where I am I owe a lot to the Salesians and now I count on all their support” she conclude.
The draw in the competition for the Olympics will take place on 19 July at Klagenfurt, Austria; and the finals will be held in “Horse Guards Parade” London between 28 July and 9 August.