Tifanny Abreu made volleyball history when she became the first trans female to play in Brazil’s Superliga. Since then, she broke the competition’s single game scoring record, and has dominated the league’s offensive statistics. Such performances has drawn the ire of many teams, players, and fans, who have asked the Brazilian Volleyball Federation (CBV) to find a “solution” to the situation. Although CBV has not yet taken any action on the matter, as it will probably wait for FIVB’s future decisions, clubs have taken action by agreeing to tag Tifanny with a maximum score in Superliga’s parity system for next season, one of only two players who are not Olympic gold medalists, but yet were singled out with the distinction. She has recently extended her contract with Bauru for next season, although a call up for Brazil’s national team was axed by the CBV and FIVB
Tifanny has recently talked to Globo.com about how she expects her second Superliga season to not be as shrouded in controversy as her maiden run. She also commented about the fact that the FIVB asked Brazilian NT head coach José Roberto Guimarães to not call her up for the Volleyball Nations League. Here are the best parts from her interview:
“I think my second season will be quieter. Now people know the reality and it’s more practical for them to understand. We, trans women, are just ordinary women, be it in strength or anything else. However, each one of us has their characteristics, like any other player, some are skinny, others are tall. We are nothing more than that.
I want to continue playing good volleyball. If I get a chance with the national team, I will want to come in and do my best, like all other girls that are there. They are to be congratulated, as they are doing a wonderful job at the VNL. If I have that opportunity, I will too. But I think my biggest job today is to show that we trans women are just as normal as they are, just like any other woman, to open the door to other girls to show that trans women can live in a society as as anyone else.
The FIVB wants to study an easier way to integrate us into their international tournaments. Maybe it will come up with a solution like it did for naturalized players, who go two or three years without being able to play for their new countries. Maybe, this will happen to me too, two or three years without being able to play international tournaments, so it can be sure I’m really at a female level of performance. It may happen that someone wants to cheat the law, which I think and hope it does not happen. If you’re a trans woman, be a trans woman for a question of identity, not because you want to play a volleyball or get some kind of advantage in life.”