ABDA is two-times champion of the Titan series of HaBaWaBa Brasil

Latin America's largest children's water polo event ended with a huge party

The team from Associação Bauruense de Desportes Aquáticos (ABDA) was, yesterday (13/12), champion for the second time of the Titan series of the festival Habawaba Brasil U-13 mixed. The silver was won by Sesi Vila Leopoldina's team Branco and the bronze was earned by ABDA Luso's team, which played against Sesi Vila Leopoldina's Azul.

In the Tsu series, another “home" team, ABDA U-11, took the Champion's Trophy. The silver was won by Clube Internacional de Regatas, from Santos (SP), and the bronze by Polo Fbda Sudesb's team, social project from Salvador (BA), which competed agains the Hebraica's Team A.

Both Sesi and ABDA, host of the event, had other teams that stood out at the festival. HaBaWaBa Brasil had, in all, 25 competing teams, from 11 clubs from various Brazilian states. The number of teams almost doubled since last year, when 14 teams were in contention.

Fair Play Trophy - Passarinho Atividades Aquáticas team, from Recife (PE), won the Fair Play trophy, for having excelled during the competition for charisma, fair play and discipline. There were also teams from several cities of São Paulo (capital and countryside), Rio de Janeiro and Brasilia. “We had demand from several foreign teams, but due to the pandemic, it was not yet possible to count on their participation. For next year, we hope to further expand the festival,” said Janaína Parra Grossi, one of the organizers for HaBaWaBa Brasil.

The youngest participating athlete also received a tribute. Luiz Matheus da Silva Galvão, only 8 years old, was the prize pupil for the ABDA champion team, playing in the Under-13 category.

Important event - HaBaWaBa Brasil, held in Bauru, is the Latin American version of the largest children's water polo festival in the world created in Italy by Waterpolo Development, with the endorsement of FINA and UNICEF. ABDA has been taking part in the festival in Italy since 2011 and in 2020 brought the event to Brazil for the first time. Other countries also hold the HaBaWaBa.

The name of the event is the junction of the first syllables of the English expression “happy baby water ball” which, is used to express the joy of a child playing polo. ” The idea is to teach water polo through playful activities and respect for the opponent and others involved, creating not only athletes, but good citizens", explains Janaína.

Knowledge and fun - In addition to water polo, the festival offers various activities for participants. In 2021, HaBaWaBa Brasil provided nutrition, badminton, capoeira and brazilian percussion clinics for athletes. For the coaches, a workshop was held with André Avallone, water polo champion and technical supervisor of Sesi-SP.

In the event's Arena, the teams could still enjoy inflatable toys provided by the municipal Department of sport and leisure (Semel) and food area. On the off-time from the games, the teams had fun in the aquatic complex Novo Thermas de Piratininga, ABDA's partner in the event.

The opening and closing ceremonies had presentations by the students of the ABDA Philharmonic, the musical arm of the association, who performed the National Anthem and other songs. During the days of the event, the children were able to interact with HaBaWaBa Brasil's sponsors: the Hungarian Olympic champion and ABDA coach Attila Sudar; the ABDA athlete and the Brazilian national team Letícia Belório; and the former ABDA athlete and former Brazilian national team goalkeeper Leonardo Fernandes (Gelão).