Volleyball-Argentina's Conte earns bronze just like his dad

TOKYO, Aug 7 (Reuters) - Facundo Conte helped Argentina to a tense victory over Brazil in Olympic men's volleyball on Saturday to earn a bronze medal just as his father Hugo did in Seoul 33 years ago.

"I am very proud," the 31-year-old Conte told reporters after Argentina stunned 2016 gold medallists Brazil to send the world's top-ranked team home without an Olympic medal for the first time since 2000.

"I grew up seeing the Olympic medal hanging on the wall at home and I even went to touch the medal before coming to Tokyo to pray for victory in the Games," he said.

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Hugo Conte represented Argentina at three Olympics.

In 1988, a year before Facundo was born, Hugo and his team mates beat Brazil in the bronze medal match to claim Argentina's first Olympic medal in the sport.

"My father had the medal and I'm grateful, but that was the past," said Facundo who led the way for Argentina by scoring 21 points.

"We had a lot of obstacles, but we've finally made it," he said, adding that he hopes the victory will raise awareness of volleyball in a country where football and tennis are far more popular.

"We've made a history today and I'm just happy and proud of be part of this team and part of a new beginning that will make Argentine volleyball even stronger," Conte said.

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Reporting by Yuka Obayashi, editing by Ed Osmond

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