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What’s your favourite colour RockTape and why?

I love all the bright colours! Especially hot pink! They stand out and look really cool!

What are three songs on your pre-competition play list?

Final song – Mo

One dance – Drake

I love you always forever – Betty who

What do you never travel without?

I’ve got lots of little things I take on my carry on… Phone, headphones, water, a roll of RockTape just in case my back gets tight during long flights, a couple of bounce balls for snacks, lip balm, hand cream.

What’s the best piece of advice your coach gave you leading into the Olympics?

Being free, passionate and enjoy playing with nothing to lose! The work has been done, now is time to enjoy and compete.

You played some of your matches at midnight! For a sport normally played under the sunshine what was the experience like playing at night in that huge stadium? 

It was amazing! The adrenaline was pumping and walking out at midnight (prime time) to a full stadium was a very special feeling I will never forget. Was incredible!

When you have an incredibly close loss – like the match you lost 19-21 in the third at the Games – how do you learn from that and bounce back for the next match?

There was a heap of learning moments from that game mentally, emotionally and physically… just like every game. But it’s important to turn the page and move on to the next task. Take the learning points from the last game and turn them into positives for the next opportunity you get.

What were some of the fun things about the Olympic Village?

It was cool being around all these amazing athletes from all around the world. Was a great experience. Even being around the whole Aussie team and seeing basketballers Deli or Patty Mills just walk in and out of The Hub or come sit down on the lounge it was weird haha. But really cool!

And was there really a McDonalds in the Village?

Yes there was! Always a massive line but there was one and it was free. I never had any, the line was always huge.

Can you describe what your favourite moment of the Olympics was for us?

My favourite moment was definitely being introduced into the Olympic arena in our first game. Actually it didn’t get old, the feeling was so special I loved every time I got my name introduced and running out in to that huge stadium was incredible.

You spend more time with your volleyball partner than you would a boyfriend – how do you balance your friendship and getting the most out of each other on the court?

We do live in each other’s pockets but we have developed a really good friendship on and off the court. We have a lot of fun and enjoy what we do, we have our ups and downs but at the end of the day we always come together and build a stronger relationship which assists us a lot on the court.

What advice do you have for other people that play team sports?

To be honest with each other and have an open mind. Giving each other feedback and having a growth mindset is critical in a team sport and to enjoy the journey is also very important.

What’s one lesson you’ve gained through sport, that applies to your whole life? There are so many things I have learnt from being an elite athlete that I use in a day-to-day basis but commitment has to be a big one.

You’ve played beach volleyball practically your whole life, with many more years to come I’m sure. What else are you up to off the sand?

Playing other sports haha. I love all different sports and I really enjoy going to play tennis, ping pong, basketball or any other ball sports. I also love going to the beach, hanging out with friends, and shopping.

How can people follow you or learn more about you?

Instagram: @mariafe_beach1

Facebook: Mariafe – beach volleyball player

Twitter: @mariafeads