Brazilian volleyball star Ana Carolina da Silva is leaving home—for the first time. Making no small move, da Silva is crossing the Atlantic to join Nilüfer Belediyespor, one of twelve teams in the Turkish professional women’s volleyball league.
The 6’0 middle blocker has been playing professionally in Brazil since her first season with Mackenzie Esporte Clube in 2005. Now, nearly thirteen years later, da Silva, referred to more informally as Carol, is hopping the pond. Her new team Nilüfer Belediyespor performed poorly overall in the league this past season, finishing with a lackluster 7-21 record. A decorated international player, Carol will bring some much needed talent to the team, which will be battling Champions League giants like Vakifbank and Fenerbahçe during the 2017-18 season.
The club’s chairman, Muhammet Aydin is optimistic about the team going forwards. “We will see a different Nilüfer Belediyespor next season,” he said, citing Carol as one of the reasons.
A member of the Brazilian squad that just won the gold medal at the 2017 FIVB World Grand Prix, which required beating a powerful Italian team in Nanjing earlier this month (da Silva tallied two solo blocks in the match), Carol has earned her share of accolades through her tenure as a volleyball player. Winner of the “Best Middle Blocker” award at both the 2013 and 2015 Club World Championships, as well as several Brazilian Women’s Volleyball Superliga “Best Blocker” titles, Carol will provide experience and ability in the middle for Nilüfer Belediyespor this coming season.