среда, 2. август 2023.

Aleksandar Šapic - biography


He was born on June 1, 1978 in Belgrade.
He started playing water polo in 1984 in the "Crvena zvezda" water polo club, where he played for all the junior categories. He moved to VK "Partizan" in 1991, and in 1992, at the age of 14, he made his debut for the first team of Partizan. In 1993, he returned to VK "Crvena zvezda" but then continued his career in VK "Bečej" in 1994. In 2001, he went to Italy to join the "Camogli" water polo club, from which he transferred to the "Rari Nantes Savona" club after three seasons. In 2006, he went to the Russian VK "Sturm 2002", where he signed a contract that made him the highest paid water polo player in history. In 2009, he ended his professional water polo career.

Club career

His club career is remarkable, he has 21 trophies, nine national championships, six of which he won in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, two in Russia and one in Italy. He won national cups nine times: seven FRY cups and two Russian cups. He won the Champions League throne once, and two medals in the LEN Cup.
In the period from 1996 to 2009, he won 14 consecutive league top scorer titles, six times in FRY, five in Italy and three times in Russia.
During his club career, he scored 1,694 goals, of which the largest number, 924, was scored for clubs in the FRY. He hit the net 494 times in the Italian league, and 276 in Russia.

Club titles (21)

9 national championships - 6 FRY, 2 Russia, 1 Italy
9 national cups - 7 FRY, 2 Russia
2 LEN cups
1 Champions League
14 consecutive league top scorer titles - 1996-2009
6 times FRY
5 times of Italy
3 times Russia

Number of goals scored

FRY (Crvena zvezda, Bečej) – 924
Italy (Camogli, Rari Nantes Savona) – 494
Russia (Sturm 2002) – 276

National team career

He was seventeen years old when he played for the national team of Yugoslavia for the first time in December 1995. From then until 2008, he played for our national team. At the very beginning of his national team career with the Yugoslav team, he won two European Junior Championships in 1995 in Esslingen and  in 1996 in Istanbul. He was declared the best player and top scorer in both competitions
The first major competition in which he participated at the age of 18 for the Yugoslav national team was the Olympic Games in Atlanta in 1996. He is one of the few team athletes who participated in the Olympic Games four times, winning one silver and two bronze medals.
With the national team of Yugoslavia, Serbia and Montenegro, and later Serbia, he participated at 22 sports events, won 20 medals, five of which at the European Championships, four at the World Championships and three at the Olympic Games. He won the top medals at the World Cup twice, he won five medals at the World League competition and the gold medal at the Mediterranean Games held in 1997 in Bari.
For the national team, he scored 981 goals in 385 official matches. He was the top scorer in the World League competitions four times, while he also won this title twice at the World Cups.
During his national team career, he was selected for the ideal team eight times at the competitions in which he participated, three times at the European and World Championships and twice at the Olympic Games.
He is one of the most trophy-winning and successful athletes in the history of Serbian sports, who scored an incredible 2,675 goals in his entire career. He is the top scorer of all time in the former Yugoslavia.

World championships

1998 - Bronze - Championship top scorer  - Ideal WC team
2001 - Silver - Championship top scorer - The ideal WC team
2003 - Bronze - Championship top scorer
2005 - Gold - The best player and championship top scorer  - The ideal WC team
2007 – 4th place

European Championships

1997 – Silver
2001 - Gold - Championship top scorer - Ideal Team EC
2003 - Gold - Championship top scorer - Ideal team EC
2006 - Gold - Championship top scorer - Ideal team EC
2008 - Silver - Championship top scorer

World League

2004 - Silver - Top scorer
2005 - Gold - Top scorer
2006 - Gold
2007 - Gold - Championship top scorer 
2008 - Gold - Championship top scorer 

World Cup

2002 - Bronze - Championship top scorer 
2005 - Gold - Championship top scorer 

Olympic Games

1996 – 8th place
2000 - Bronze - Championship top scorer  - The ideal team of the OG
2004 - Silver - Championship top scorer  - Ideal OG team
2008 – Bronze

Mediterranean Games

1997 - Gold

Number of goals scored

National team (FRY, SCG, Serbia) – 981
Total career goals – 2675

The top scorer

2 times the top scorer of the Olympic Games OG
4 times the top scorer of the  World Cup WC
4 times the top scorer of the European Championship EC
4 times the top scorer of the World League WL
2 times the top scorer of the  World Cup WC

The ideal team

8 times selected in the ideal team (OG, WC, EC)

Work in sports organizations

In addition to his trophy-winning water polo career, he also contributed to Serbian sports through engagement in sports organizations. He was the president of the water polo club "Crvena zvezda" from 2003 to 2004.
After the end of his playing career in the Italian club "Rari Nantes Savona", he continued  working there as sports manager for European competitions from 2006 to 2014.

Sports and social awards and prizes

Thanks to his exceptional sports career, he achieved  numerous sports and social awards and, among others, he was declared the athlete of the year of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina in 2000.
He had the honor of being twice awarded The Order of Nemanja, the first class for his contribution in representing the state and its citizens. He was awarded for the first time in 2001 and then in 2004.
He received the award for the best athlete in the selection of the Olympic Committee of Serbia and Montenegro in 2004, and a year later, in 2005, he was declared laureate of the October Award of the City of Belgrade.
For more than a decade he was considered one of the best players in the world, and in 2005 he was officially declared the best water polo player in the world.
He was awarded the May Award in 2008, the major sports and social prize that the Sports Federation of Serbia traditionally grants every year to athletes, sports federations and experts who imprinted on the history of Serbian sports with their results and thereby promote our country in the world.
In 2010, he was chosen as the third best athlete in the 21st century in the FINA selection.
In October 2016, he received a charter for his contribution to the development and work of the Sports Academy as an award for the most successful student since the establishment of this institution.
In July 2017, the World Federation of Sports and Culture, located in Minneapolis (Minnesota), declared him the best " center forward" water polo player of all time. In the voting process, he won 4,045 votes, which was another confirmation of his successful goal-scoring career.
He was awarded "The Best European" prize in the field of politics in 2020  by the First European House in Belgrade in December 2020.

Charity work

He is the founder of the Humanitarian Foundation - “Budi human”(Be Humane), which was founded in 2014 and began operating in June. The foundation raises funds to help children, adults, institutions and associations from Serbia.
“Budi human” foundation grew very quickly after its establishment into one of the most credible humanitarian foundations in the region, which aims at providing the funds for the treatment and necessary therapies, primarily to children.
From its first day until now, the Humanitarian Foundation - “Budi human”, has helped several thousand beneficiaries, most of them are children, and have raised  tens of millions of euros. 

In February 2016, he put all the medals he won in his playing career up at auction on the website of the Humanitarian Foundation - “Budi human”, and all the money from the sold medals would be paid for the treatment and therapy of the foundation's beneficiaries.
He is the recipient of a large number of awards for socially useful and humanitarian work, with which many institutions in the country expressed their gratitude  for everything he did in the field of humanitarian work as an active athlete, but also for the humanitarian work that he continued more intensively and responsibly after his sport career.

Out of sports career

He graduated in 2003,  he earned master's degree in 2009 and doctorate in 2012 in the field of industrial management.
He was assistant to the mayor of the City of Belgrade from 2009 to 2012. He was elected as the president of the Municipality of New Belgrade in the 2012 elections and re-elected in the elections of 2016. He began his third term as the president of the Municipality of New Belgrade after the elections in 2020. 
In 2013, he formed his association "For our city", with which he independently participated in the municipal elections in 2016 and won a convincing victory in New Belgrade. With his actions and results in politics, he became the pioneer of a different way of dealing with politics, focused on the field of social construction.
In the 2018 Belgrade elections, his association was the third, with just over 9% of the support of the citizens of Belgrade.
At the session of the Assembly of the Serbian Patriotic Union, held on July 21, 2018, Aleksandar Šapić was unanimously elected as the president of this newly formed political organization, which was supposed to act at the republican level in the future. The Serbian Patriotic Union became a parliamentary party for the first time after the elections in 2020.
After the unification of the Serbian Patriotic Union with the Serbian Progressive Party, on May 29, 2021, he was elected as vice president of the Main Board of the Serbian Progressive Party.
At the constituent session of the Assembly of the City of Belgrade, on June 20, 2022, he was elected as the mayor of Belgrade.

The family

He is married and the father of two children. He lives and works in Belgrade.

Foreign languages

He speaks Russian, Italian and English.