Brazilian powerchair soccer team is revving up their motorized wheelchairs as they train ahead of the South American championships. Roselle Chen reports.
Brazil may be known as a soccer powerhouse, but a team of co-eds hope to make the country champions of a different, but related sport, powerchair soccer. Members of the Rio de Janeiro Power Soccer Clube get together every Saturday to hone their skills as they prepare for the South American championships in Uruguay next month. The club's president, Bruno Fernandes, says the team has what it takes to take home the trophy. SOUNDBITE: Bruno Fernandes, Rio de Janeiro Power Soccer Clube president, saying (Portuguese): "The team is here training quite a bit, every week and we have our techniques and our plays. The team is really excited." Eight players on each side in motorized wheelchairs use their control sticks to whip around the court in a variation of soccer that has brought the game to a new group of aspiring sports stars. For Carlos Eduardo, playing powerchair soccer is a time to let loose and leave his regular wheelchair behind for a bit. SOUNDBITE: Carlos Eduardo, Rio de Janeiro Power Soccer Clube member, saying (Portuguese): "Playing soccer in a motorized wheelchair, I do it with all my strength. It is really great. It makes me really happy. When I play, I forget about the wheelchair. I just think about the attacking, defending, just like playing soccer before. I'd say I even play better now." The Copa Libertadores championship will run from June 6-7 in Montevideo and will be played against the two best teams from Uruguay, Brazil and Argentina.