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Laia Palau announces her retirement from the basketball courts at the age of 42


The Barcelona player closes her career with a legendary record: 33 club titles and 12 medals with the Spanish team in a 25-year career

Laia Palau throws the curtain on a legendary career.

The Barcelona player announced on Wednesday her definitive retirement from the courts at the age of 42, after collecting an unfathomable record with 33 club titles and 12 medals with the Spanish team in 25 years in the elite.

“It is not a surprise what we are doing here.

She stopped playing basketball.

I don't want to use the word retired because I'm not really retiring from basketball, ”said the Uni Girona captain in her official farewell announcement.

“My idyll with this sport does not end here.

That's why I say that I stop playing, and not that I retire.

I will continue to work in this world.

This sport has been my life, it is my life and it looks like it will continue to be my life.

At the moment I do not leave the pavilion ”, she completed, before opening the list of thanks.

“I am not very prepared.

Normally I take the microphone and it's not hard for me, but today it's a bit hard.

I am very grateful to my parents, who are here with me one more day, accompanying me on this adventure.

If it hadn't been for them, I wouldn't have made it this far.

They also retire today.

They are a bit sad.

I have made my decision and I am very happy.

Life has given me a tremendous career.

And I have challenges ahead that make me very excited.

My life has been exciting in this world.

I am very fond of the love that people have given me.

We have to thank life for the things that happen”, said Laia Palau.


2021. Laia Palau: "The world should be managed as a team"

2019. Laia Palau: “We cling to life like lichens”

2018. Laia Palau: "I put baskets, but what do I contribute to the world?"

After losing to Uni Girona in the semifinals of the Endesa Women's League against Valencia Basket at the beginning of the month, Laia Palau left La Fonteta thinking about her big decision.

That of prolonging her career one more season and playing until the 44-year-old border, or putting an end to it and taking her teaching to the Training Academy for girls and young people that the Catalan club is defining and that already bears the name her.

“The club has set itself the goal of having its own quarry and I like everything related to youth basketball.

They have given it my name because I am going to take care of it, although it is still necessary to define how.

But what is clear is that I want to stay and continue working in the world of basketball, ”she said 15 days ago.

In November, Laia Palau already closed her stage as captain of Spain.

A marathon race that she began to write on August 16, 2002, with her international debut in Vilagarcía de Arousa, about to turn 23, and which she crowned at the Tokyo Games last summer.

An ode to resistance after surrendering a thousand existential doubts.

The 'what am I doing here?'

it was her dilemma for much of the race.

Twice she feigned withdrawal from her, but in maturity she unleashed her passion.

"I have shared an unprecedented life process with my mother, because she retired at 65 and I was going to do it at 38, at the same time, although in the end I postponed it," he confessed to EL PAÍS in 2018. He definitely found his place in seniority , making resistance their revolution.

An extraordinary journey of 19 years of competitive perseverance with the national team, with 12 medals (three golds,

three silvers and six bronzes) in 19 championships and 314 caps.

The most extensive list of winners in Spanish basketball.

Except for the 1993 continental gold in Perugia, when she was 14 years old, and the 2001 bronze, which came a year before her international debut, Laia Palau has been on all the other podiums in Spanish women's basketball: 12 of 14. “Everything has come about through perseverance, through resistance, because I'm still here. What a humor life has!” he says every time he reviews his album.

Did she ever imagine such a long road?, they asked her before last summer as captain.


I get tired thinking about it (laughs).

In my beginnings I was not very clear about anything about basketball.

I didn't even know if I liked it, although it looks bad for me to say it.

Perhaps the last 10 years of my career are the only ones in which I have been a little more sure of what I was doing here.

But for a long time I felt very strange in this world, ”she replied then her.

He thought about leaving the national team after winning silver at Rio 2016, but he felt strong enough to continue.

Then, in March 2017, he announced that after that year's European Championships in Prague, when he turned 38, he would retire.

She went to play in Australia to put the world in between, but her teammates and her Federation made her doubt based on affection.

The "popular pressure" pushed her to retrace her steps, she folded sails, she returned to the French League —where she began her journey as an emigrant back in 2004—, and she thoroughly prepared herself for the re-enlistment.

She was there to feel the tribute of the Spanish fans at the World Cup in Tenerife in 2018 on the court. By then she had four more years of basketball left.

“I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up.

I studied social education, did jobs in prisons and mental health centers and was very interested.

I am very humanistic

I like the social world and the cultural world too.

I have always said that she would change me to be a theater actress, ”she confessed to EL PAÍS in that 2018. Laia Palau draws the curtain on a performance that she began in 1997 in Barcelona.

📹 There will be no other like HER 🙏

😍 Laia Palau 😍#GraciasLaia #LaFamilia #SomosEquipo

– Basketball Spain (@BaloncestoESP) May 18, 2022

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Source: elparis

All sports articles on 2022-05-18

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