TRENTINO and Lokomotiv NOVOSIBIRSK carry Europe’s hopes at Men’s Club World Champs in Brazil
News from the FIVB
Betim, Brazil, October 14, 2013. Two teams – four-time club world champions Diatec TRENTINO of Italy and the winners of the 2013 CEV Volleyball Champions League, Russia’s Lokomotiv NOVOSIBIRSK – are set to carry Europe’s hopes at the FIVB Men’s Club World Championship running through October 15-20 in Betim, Brazil. TRENTINO will open the program on Tuesday for the first round of action playing Iran’s Kalleh Sports Club while Lokomotiv will make their debut on Wednesday as they take on La Romana of the Dominican Republic.
Diatec TRENTINO are currently on the crest of the wave following their triumph in the Men’s Italian Super Cup last Wednesday to surprise more than a few sceptics who didn’t rate them as a sure bet for this year.
Now it is time for the FIVB Men’s Club World Championship in Betim, Brazil, and the coach Roberto Serniotti is optimistic about his team’s chances of scoring another big surprise. Italian teams have won all eight editions of the competition so far, including the last four that were swept by Diatec TRENTINO.
“We know that it is going to be more difficult this year because the team was renovated," Serniotti said during the press conference held after the conclusion of the general technical meeting. “We need to play match by match and our first target is to get into the semi-finals as the first in our pool. We are going to do the best possible to defend the result of last year,” he added. “And all the players want to play as best as possible.”
Russian teams have been increasingly successful lately and Andrey Voronkov expressed a very simple philosophy when he took time to analyse the chances of his Lokomotiv NOVOSIBIRSK. “Our goal is simple: we need to win every game,” Voronkov stated. “We are playing this competition for the first time and we know it is hard, but we will try to win every game.”
Another team that could jeopardize the winning streak of teams from Italy is Brazil’s Sada Cruzeiro, coached by Argentinean Marcelo Méndez, who finished second last year when the event took place in Doha, Qatar. “We know this is a very difficult championship but our expectations are the same as usual: to be the winners,” Méndez said. “There are many strong teams but I believe that we have prepared strong enough to play a finale. Our team always played good in front of the home crowd and I think it will be the same this time,” Méndez said about his team playing a double role as host country and also host city.
Iran’s men Volleyball is an emerging power from Asia and Kalleh Sports Club is certainly a threat to cause some damage in Betim. “The progress of Iranian Volleyball was very good last year and the year before,” head coach Behrouz Ataei Nouri said. “Our first goal is to reach the semi-finals because we made some changes after winning the Asian Cup and some players were at the Men’s U23 World Championship and our practice was not very good.”
The state of Minas Gerais has become very familiar for coach Fabian Armoa and his UPCN Volley Club from Argentina since this the third time they come to play in Betim in 2013. “We already know a little of here after the South American Club Championship and some friendly matches,” Armoa said. “We are very proud to be here with great teams and being part of the tournament. Our goal is to be playing on Sunday.”
Masashi Nambu, coach of the Panasonic Panthers of Japan wants his team to show their defensive strong game which is part of the Asian Volleyball style. “We got an invitation from Sada Cruzeiro and FIVB and we are happy with this opportunity to show the best of Japanese Volleyball,” Nambu said. “We want to grow with the tournament and be able to get into the semi-finals.”
Osiel Vazquez, the Cuban coach of Dominican Republic’s La Romana Club said this will be a learning experience for both him and his team. “It is our first time and I am sure it is going to be quite an experience for us,” Vazquez commented. “We have a good team and I hope the boys will be able to give a good show of Volleyball in the first match and the next ones.”
Finally, Ben Mustapha Mohamed coach of Tunisia’s Club Sportif Sfaxien admitted they are not among the teams to make the cut after the preliminary phase. “We know we are not the favourites,” he said. “But we are here to represent Africa and Tunisia hoping to get at least one victory.” He added: “Just being part of this world championship is a dream for coaches and players and that’s a reason to celebrate.”
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