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Cuban volleyball player gets Polish passport

PR dla Zagranicy
Jo Harper 15.07.2015 08:15
Cuban volleyball player Wilfredo León Venero on Tuesday was granted a Polish passport, opening the way for him to play in the Polish national team.
Wilfredo León Venero. Photo: Wikimedia CommonsWilfredo León Venero. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Specific approval has yet to be issued by the International Volleyball Federation, but the Polish-speaking player has been fast-tracked by Polish authorities and will likely start playing for the national team this year, reports suggest.

"I will do everything that is in my power to deserve to play for Poland," he said.

Venero applied at the beginning of 2015. The Cuban has been living for more than two years in Poland.

Together with his manager Andrzej Grzyb he made a statement to the media on 14 July:

"I give a declaration that I will do everything in my power to deserve the honour, which for me is playing in the Polish National Team. Obtaining Polish citizenship has given me a huge motivation for this, to show my best in every upcoming tournament. I stress that in order to obtain Polish citizenship there were no financial considerations, but only life and sport. I live in Poland with my fiancée and will continue living in this country. In consideration of my situation I would ask for no political overtones to be associated with Cuba. I am a native Cuban, I've got my family, and my trip was connected only with my personal affairs. Greetings to all volleyball fans in Poland and those who support us," the volleyball player wrote.

Venero, who is 22, was a member of Cuba men's national volleyball team in 2008-2012 and Russian club Zenit Kazan and a silver medalist of the World Championship in 2010. (jh)

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