I usually don’t write about volleyball because, let’s face it, I’m not an expert. But tonight I have to because the Italy NT made me fall in love with this sport back in 2012 and now this love is stronger than ever.
I can’t recall the last time I cried for a sports match but tonight I cried so much, like real tears and sobs. Because these guys made me laugh, cheer, jump on my seat, almost cry with joy after the semi-final against USA. And made me understand the beauty of this sport, the team spirit that drives it, the support the players give each other, the importance of staying together, side by side, after every point, scored or not. And I used to stupidly hate volleyball, just because, in middle and high school, I couldn’t play for the life of me, and my classmates used to make fun of me for that. I also have to thank my sister, who plays volleyball, and asked me to watch a game with her, and I was hooked.
So I want you to remember all these wonderful players and men who gifted us with this dream:
Osmany Juantorena, Matteo Piano, Simone Giannelli, Daniele Sottile, Ivan Zaytsev, Filippo Lanza, Simone Buti, Emanuele Birarelli, Salvatore Rossini, Oleg Antonov, Luca Vettori, Massimo Colaci.
And, of course, mister Chicco Blengini, who guided this great team to the final.
Thank you guys, just that. Thank you. ❤️ For being who you are, for the happiness, the tears, the smiles, the bravery and for everything that’s yet to come. I will always remember what you made me feel. You deserve only the best.
Yes, it was a semi-final. Yes, we all know what happened two days later. And yet this remains one of the best sports events I’ve ever witnessed. The italian team plays an awful third set but rises from the ashes to win this incredible match. Zaytsev’s aces, the ball that’s in for millimeters, Colaci scoring a point, looked like signs from above. After some heart attacks, pillows thrown and actual tears, we couldn’t believe our eyes, just like Giannelli. What a ride. Grazie Ragazzi!