Team Voléro Zürich's title hopes at the FIVB Women’s Club World Championship may have been cut short by upstart finalist Pomi Casalmaggiore, but the Swiss volleyball club sure had plenty of bright moments in the Manila-held tournament.
Aside from a bunch of highlight reel-worthy plays and fearless dives, Volero also brought in a handful of beguiling volleybelles, which included former Playboy covergirl Mariana Costa.
The 30-year-old court stunner was easily one of the foreign favorites, and to no one's suprise, was swarmed for photo ops and fan signs during the league's Fan Day at Robinsons Place Manila. Mariana, for her part, seemed delighted with the show of love.
Good thing FHM was able to slip past the impassioned mob and have a quick chat with Mariana about the sport:
How big of a sport is volleyball in Brazil?
In Brazil, volleyball is already big but it’s still growing. That’s a great thing because little kids get the opportunity to love the sport, too, and I think that’s important.
We’ve heard that you’ve also tried your hand at beach volleyball? How was the transition from indoor play like?
I just played one year of beach volleyball, but it wasn’t that significant of an experience, mostly because it’s a whole different sport. Beach volleyball and volleyball just have the same name but the two are completely different, ha ha! And I had to learn it [beach volleyball] from scratch because I’ve always played indoors.
Having played a couple of years for the Brazilian volleyball team, would you consider yourself a veteran at this stage?
I’ve only been with the team for two years, so not a lot. But I think that most of Volero Zurich’s players already have a lot of experience with the national team and they can help me get the experience I need. That’s what I need to become an experienced player.
Do guys get intimidated with female athletes, with you being active and all?
I don’t think that men get intimidated because of my profession, it’s just like sometimes maybe because we’re a little bit taller than other women, and more independent because like we don’t depend on men. But we’ve gotten used to that a little bit more or less.
What should Filipino volleyball fans expect from Team Voléro Zürich at the FIVB WCWC?
We worked a lot and we’re going to be ready for this tournament. We’ll give our everything and play our best volleyball to make sure we’ll go home with the medal!
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