22 June, 2016
02 July
Emanuely De Oliveira (BRA)
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De Oliveira can be a defensive powerhouse for Brazil

ZARAGOZA (2016 FIBA U17 Women’s World Championship) - Behind the likely continued headline contributions of Izabela Nicoletti, Brazil's challenge at the tournament will be underpinned by the likes of Emanuely De Oliveira who is primed to patrol her country's defense.

Last year, the do-it-all wing player showed her athleticism at the FIBA Americas U16 Women’s Championship to lead Brazil defensively with a team-high number of blocks and by also coming up with plenty of steals too. Having made the transition from soccer to basketball, De Oliveira has never looked back and now she is ready for a global debut.

FIBA.com: It must have been an incredible experience in Puebla last year when Brazil beat the USA in the Semi-Finals of the FIBA Americas U16 Women’s Championship?
De Oliveira: Beating the United States was very exciting, because it was time they did not lose. We realise that we have a very good group and team unity helped immensely and made quite a difference. Winning against a world power like the USA caused the group to stay stronger and therefore we’re more confident for this tournament. There is no doubt the Championship [in Puebla] left me with memories of many wonderful moments. At the end of the game against the USA, I stopped and did not believe what had just happened. Certainly for now, it has been the most exciting moment for me.

FIBA.com: How are you feeling ahead of the tournament in Zaragoza and what can we expect from you when the action gets started?
De Oliveira: I am very happy to once again defend the vest of Brazil. It's a big responsibility, but I know I will do my best to help the team. I'm in a wonderful situation, with much anticipation and positive thinking. I am also a focused and determined athlete, who will give my maximum and I am well prepared for this moment. I realise I'm more mature, I am more dedicated and my perception of the game has improved. I'm going with everything, with a force and a great desire to win.

FIBA.com: You were the best wing player of the Brazilian U15 Championship and it's just one personal award you have received so far. What advice can you give to other girls who are thinking of playing basketball or have started and what to come to tournaments like this one in Zaragoza?
De Oliveira: Since I started playing, I have dedicated my best in everything I do and always keep the focus on where I'm going. It is my goal as an athlete get to the places I dreamed of and always draw a trajectory that I can follow with great confidence and skill. For anything in life, we have to fight for our goals. I say that is always tiring, but rewarding. So be very focused on your desires. Determination to train / practice is essential and always try to give the most you can. Improving is always something that can never go out of our plans, it helps you to win and get to where we want.