Dominican Brayelin Martínez dreams of the Olympics

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic, January 8, 2020 – Brayelin Martínez has emerged as the new scoring-machine of the Dominican Republic taking the spot previously owned by Bethania De la Cruz.

Martínez, the second best scorer of the FIVB Women’s Volleyball Nations League in 2018 and fourth best in 2019 with 250 and 258 points, respectively, is one of the pillars of the Dominican squad that will be seeking a ticket to the Olympic Games as the NORCECA Tournament Tokyo 2020 takes place in Santo Domingo.

The towering Martinez, who stands at 2.01 meters, is dreaming with the big chance to show her scoring skills at the spotlight of the Olympic Games.

“I have played at the Nations League, the World Cup and the World Championship so the Olympics are the only missing piece in my career,” said the 23 years-old Martinez, the third best scorer in last year’s World Cup with 197 points.

Martinez can see a big chance of realizing her dreams next weekend at the Sports Palace of Santo Domingo, where around 10,000 fans will be rooting for the home side.

“Playing at home give us an extra incentive to go for the ticket,” says Brayelin whose younger sister Jineiry (22 years-old) is one of the starting middle blockers of the Dominican team known as The Queens of the Caribbean. “Last year we won the Pan American Games in Lima and the NORCECA Continental Championship and only lost to United States in the Pan American Cup against these opponents”.

Martínez is quick to make clear she has the utmost respect for the teams and players of Mexico, Canada and Puerto Rico who also will be competing for the only ticket available to Tokyo.

“You can’t live on past history and every day is a new day and you have to go out and perform,” she said. “Our job is to give our best effort to win the ticket in front of our fans and families”.

Martínez will combine with De la Cruz to form a tandem as strong as they come in terms of scoring. De la Cruz was the fifth best scorer of the 2019 VNL with 241 points and was ninth at the World Cup with 148 points.

Mexico’s top weapons are Andrea Rangel and Samantha Bricio, Canada has the duo of Alexa Gray and Kiera Van Ryk and Puerto Rico’s offense rely mostly on Paulina Prieto and Stephanie Enright.

“We have all the pieces in place ready for the first whistle next Friday and hopefully get the Daruma at the closing ceremony on Sunday,” Brayelin concluded.