BLUMENAU - Not all teams participating in a World University Championship cannot fight with the same weapons and thus have different objectives.
Where Romania will battle for the gold medal, Uruguay came to gain experience and give an impulse to handball in the country. FISU talked with Virginia Bolla, official of the Uruguayan delegation and players Silvina Baraibar and Jimena Rosillo of this atypical team.
FISU: Virginia, what is your role in this team?
VB: I am here to take care of the girls, I am not a technician or a physiotherapist but I am here to make sure the girls are in good condition that they can rest and relax when they are not playing. I am also here to speak with them if something is wrong and that helps a lot.
FISU: How developed is handball in Uruguay?
VB: It is hardly developed at all. It is in the universities that you find most of the players and that is also why we could bring a team here. The national university sports league has selected the girls and now we are here.
FISU: Silvina, Jimena is this your first international event?
SB: Some of our players have played in the national team but for most of us this is our first international experience.
FISU: Is it very different from the matches you play in Uruguay?
JR: The thing is that first of all, the level is very different, the European teams are much better, but they are here to battle for the title, of course we came to win, but for us, the most important is to gain experience. Playing against those European teams also teaches us a lot because their playing style is completely different and you can see they have the opportunity to train much more than we have because we need to study and/or work and we do not have professional clubs.
FISU: Do you think coming here will help handball to grow in your country in the future?
All: We hope so, we will bring this experience with us, in terms of sport but also in terms of emotions and we hope this will give a start for something bigger.
Right after this interview FISU had an opportunity to meet the Romanian team which had just beaten Uruguay 34:21. Simona Maior-Pasca and Victor Mihailescu, resp. coach and official of the team answered our questions as well as Paula Teodorescu (Visan) and Andreaa Adespii-Molnar goalkeeper and center of the team.
FISU: You are used to high level handball, is this tournament very different of what you face usually?
AAM: In Romania the level is very high as it is here in some games, nevertheless in here the referees let the game be tougher and sometimes it surprises us.
FISU: How has your team been selected?
VM & SMP: The main coach was appointed by the Romanian Handball Federation for his long experience and he made the selection.
FISU: And did you have the opportunity to practice before?
PT: Not really, we had just a week before the tournament but it is not a big problem because most of us play in the Romanian league so we know each other and the atmosphere is good.
FISU: Your last group game will be against Brazil and will be crucial, the atmosphere will be electric, are you prepared?
All: We hope it will be festive, we are used to tensed games in our league and it motivates us, even if the people will be cheering for Brazil, it is always good to have some ambiance in the stadium especially for important matches, we hope we will make the best of it.
Uruguay will play its last game against Chile what will be its final when Romania will play against Brazil a game which may qualify both teams for the final.
(Source: Julien Buhajezuk, FISU WUC Dept.)Read more