Federico and Fernanda Pereyra have always shared a last name and their love for volleyball but since last week, they have something else in common – they’re both Olympians.
Pereyra family enjoying reunion in Tokyo
Federico, in volleyball, and Fernanda, in beach volleyball, are competing together at the Olympics
Published 01:27, 31 Jul 2021
While the 33-year-old Federico is part of Argentina’s national volleyball team roster at the Games for the second time in Tokyo, his younger sister Fernanda, 30, made it to the Olympics for the first time in 2021 in beach volleyball, alongside partner Ana Gallay.
“Sharing this Olympic experience with her makes it very special for both of us,” said Federico, who also played at the London 2012 Olympics. “And even more for our families. They’re all very happy about us and having a lot of fun while watching us compete here.”
Their Olympic experience has not gone exactly the way they dreamed as the siblings haven’t been able to watch each other play in person due to the restrictions concerning access to venues, but that hasn’t stopped them from supporting each other and getting together to enjoy what is a very special moment for them and their families.
“Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to watch each other play at the stadiums but we’re always following each other’s matches and cheering,” Fernanda commented. “We’ve been trying to meet whenever possible and enjoy some time together at the Olympic Village.”
Fernanda was privileged to have an Olympian in the family before becoming one herself and she wasn’t shy to go to her older brother and ask for advice after she qualified with partner Gallay by winning the South American Continental Cup Finals in June.
“He always said that only the best are at the Olympics and that the key is to play free and take advantage of every opportunity an opponent gives you,” she added. “And also that matches would go really fast and that the details would be what would make the difference.”
Matches have indeed gone fast for Fernanda and her partner Gallay as the duo exited the tournament after completing their three pool matches against Brazil’s Agatha Bednarczuk/Eduarda ‘Duda’ Lisboa, Canada’s Heather Bansley/Brandie Wilkerson and China’s Fan Wang/Xinyi Xia.
Federico and his teammates still have a deciding match against the United States to play on Sunday and the opposite knows he can count not only on the close support of his sister, but also of their parents, who have been switching day for night to follow their children from almost 20,000 kilometres away and with a 12-hour time difference.
“They’ve been trying to follow every match they can,” Fernanda said. “There’s a huge time difference, which makes it more difficult, but they couldn’t be happier about it and are having a lot of fun.”