Players with are much more than legends. Pau Gasol, Marc Gasol, Sergio Rodríguez, Laia Palau, Anna Cruz and Marta Xargay They have announced their retirement from the National Team in 2021. They display and add track records to frame, unsurpassed commitment and spirit, talent and successes, many successes, and an outstanding example for future generations.
Pau Gasol debuted with the National Team at Eurobasket 2021, in which he already won the first of the 11 medals that have marked his international career, four of them gold. He has signed his 20 years with Spain with 216 caps and becoming one of the only seven players in history to have participated in 5 editions of the Olympic Games, a select list that also includes Juan Carlos Navarro and Rudy Fernández. Weeks after returning from Tokyo, he announced his final retirement, with 41 years of age and an endless list of titles, medals and individual awards in the National Team, FC Barcelona and the NBA. A legendary race for a legendary player.
They will no longer wear the shirt of Spain Marc Gasol and Chacho Rodríguez. Both also leave an extraordinary legacy of commitment, talent and collective and individual success in the history of the National Team of the last two decades. But they are still active, Sergio in the ranks of the Armani of Milan, of which he continues to be one of its great references, and Marc in the LEB Oro. His decision to end his professional career in the ranks of the team of the club he presides over, Bàsquet Girona, has revolutionized the competition. “We got off this beautiful attraction that we got on 15 years ago,” said Marc in Tokyo, after the last Olympic match in Spain. Marc accredits 191 caps and 9 medals; El Chacho, 154 and 7.
And what about Laia. She announced her decision surrounded by the Women’s National Team to which she has given so much and which has become the player with the most matches in history (no less than 314) and 12 medals in her showcases, from all competitions: Eurobasket, World and Olympic Games. The penultimate appearance of the ‘eternal captain’ was also a historical milestone: equaling the legendary Uliana Semenova with 10 participations in the maximum continental championship and surpassing her in matches played (74). At the time of his goodbye, he assured: “The National Team is your team par excellence, we are the representatives of the many people who have been bitten by the basketball bug. To have been lucky enough to be in the National Team for twenty years is magnificent ”.
For now, Laia continues to teach her unique chair in the Endesa Women’s League with the Spar Girona shirt.
Like Pau, Marta Xargay has put an end to her career as a professional player, not only with the National Team: 147 caps and 7 medals (3 gold) remain forever in her record with Spain, of which she has been a determining player for his talent and character of a leader. On the other hand, Anna Cruz is still active, in the ranks of the Casademont Zaragoza of the Endesa Women’s League. His history with Spain includes 158 games and 8 medals (2 gold) and the indelible memory of the basket that in 2016 put the National Team in the historic final of the Olympic Games.