CKU ARG-AUS 021

The ability to turn challenges into opportunities is a key to success and Argentinean opposite Federico Pereyra has been excelling at just that during the 2021 FIVB Volleyball Nations League.

With his national team shorthanded during the first three weeks of the Preliminary Round, the 32-year-old Pereyra was required to be on the court more than any of his teammates. He responded with some great performances.

Pereyra has appeared in each of his team’s VNL matches so far and ranks ninth among the tournament’s top scorers with 132 points registered so far. He was instrumental in each of his team’s victories, delivering 22 points against Germany and Japan and 15 against the Netherlands and Australia.

“I’m very comfortable with trying to help the team as much as I can,” he said. “My main goals are to be aggressive with my serving and consistent on offence. Every day I work for that and the goal is to be better than the day before. That’s what challenges me. We had some difficulties in the first weeks, but it was also a tough test for us.”

Top Scorer: Federico Pereyra

Pereyra’s strong performances in the VNL should help him return to the Olympics after nine years. He was a member of the Argentinean team that finished fifth at London 2012, but did not play for the national team between 2015 and 2019, before he was called up for the VNL.

His recent run of form could be enough to convince head coach Marcelo Mendez to have him on his 12-player roster for the Tokyo Games.

“Being at the Olympics is a big dream and the greatest motivation for any athlete,” he said. “Every day I go out there and give everything I have to help the team and hopefully that will secure my spot in Tokyo. A lot has happened since London and all these experiences turned me into who I am now. As a player, I’d say I’m a lot calmer and someone who knows what he wants better.”

Top Scorer: Federico Pereyra

Pereyra’s experience in London was certainly memorable but if he gets to be part of the Argentinean roster in Tokyo it might prove to be an even more special moment for him. That’s because his younger sister, Fernanda, is currently trying to qualify in beach volleyball.

She plays with two-time Olympian Ana Gallay and the duo will try to secure their spot in Tokyo during the South American Continental Cup Finals at the end of June.

“It would be a dream for both of us as siblings to be at the Olympics together,” Pereyra added. “But when I think about it, all that comes to mind is how happy and proud our parents would be. They’ve always been incredibly supportive of both of us and made a huge effort for us to be where we’re at. I’m very grateful to have the parents I do.”