One of the uncontested highlights of the 2021 FIVB Volleyball Nations League was the chance to see Thailand's Fab 6 play one last tournament as a team.

Standing in for players affected by Covid-19, Thailand's veterans were a hit with fans watching the competition in Rimini, Italy. And the Thai players were clearly enjoying the event too. They were just pleased to be able to play together and represent their country one last time before retiring from international duties for good.

This is what Pleumjit Thinkaow, Nootsara Tomkom, Onuma Sittirak and Malika Kanthong had to say about the experience:

Pleumjit Thinkaow: “The 2021 VNL was full of beautiful and fun memories. It was not a difficult decision for us to travel (to Italy at the last minute) because we knew that it would be the only and final opportunity for us to play together again as Team Thailand, and we had not expected this to happen at all. It was very memorable and we were happy to meet our friends from other teams and have a chance to say goodbye. Even though those goodbyes were sad, we were still filled with happiness.”

Nootsara Tomkom: “Being able to return and compete at the VNL with teammates we made so much history with, I believe it’s a memory that means a lot to our team. We did not mind the results of the competition, as everyone enjoyed the moment of being together. On the very last day of the tournament, the organisers gave us so much importance and recognition. It made us happy and gave us unforgettable memories as athletes of the Thai national team for the last time.

Onuma Sittirak: “It felt really great to be able to return to the VNL. But I was even happier to be able to return and play with the core team. I would say we had been away from each other, from this line of work and from our usual form for quite some time. But when I found out that we were going back to play together once more, it gave me so much joy.

“Competing together gave us that time to spend together, eat together and be there to serve our country in a final international event. It felt great. At the same time, I had this feeling of loss, thinking about the time ahead when we will no longer be able to compete internationally together.”

Malika Kanthong: “I was glad to be able to stand together with my teammates right up to the last match. Even if we lost, I’m so happy that I got the chance to play with my beloved teammates. I want to thank the organisers for honouring us at the end of the event. I will keep that in my memories forever.”