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30/05/2017 18:13
Andrej Kravarik takes over reins of Slovakia men’s national team
News from the National Federations

Bratislava, Slovakia, May 30, 2017. The Slovak Volleyball Federation have announced a major change to the coaching staff of their men’s national team shortly before the start of the FIVB World League 2017. Assistant coach Andrej Kravarik (pictured) will be from now on at the helm of the team, thus replacing Miroslav Palgut.
 
“It was not an easy decision. We analysed all of the positive and negative implications and we concluded that a change is needed to provide the team with some kind of a further impulse. The reason for the change is the unconvincing performance of our team at the World Championship qualifier last week in the Netherlands. We have the World League, the third round of World Championship qualifications in July and the European Championship in August ahead of us. This is a very challenging programme and we have not seen the possibility of a further progression from the team. Andrej Kravárik, who will undoubtedly have a difficult role, will take over the reins of the team. He will focus on two goals, which means perform well in the World League and try to qualify to the World Championship from a very difficult group. After that, we will have the opportunity to review the team’s activities and results and we will decide on how to proceed. We thank Miroslav Palgut for the work he has done and wish him much success in his future endeavours,” said the President of the Slovak Volleyball Federation, Mr Lubor Halanda.
 
Miroslav Palgut was at the helm of the team since March 2016. Under his leadership, Slovakia finished eighth in the Group 2 of the 2016 World League and qualified for the Final Round of this year’s European Championship.   
 
His successor Andrej Kravarik is a legend of Slovakian Volleyball. He was born on July 28, 1971 in Piešťany. After claiming two national league titles with VKP BRATISLAVA, he continued his career in Greece, playing there since 1994 for PAOK and Iraklis THESSALONIKI, Ethnikos ALEXANDROUPOLIS, Aris THESSALONIKI and again for Iraklis. In 1998, he left Greece for one season to play for Gabeca MONTICHIARI in the Italian Serie A1. After that, he returned to Thessaloniki, becoming a four-time national champion and participating in five editions of the CEV Volleyball Champions League.

He made his international debut at the 1993 European Championship in Finland with the former Czechoslovakia, before playing for Slovakia at the 1997 and 2001 EuroVolley – as well as for Greece in 2005 and 2007. He represented Greece at the 2004 Olympics in Athens and the 2006 FIVB World Cup. He is a three-time recipient of the award for Slovakia’s Best Volleyball Player (1994, 2000 and 2001). He worked as an assistant coach for the Slovak national team from 2011 to 2013 alongside Štefan Chrtiansky, and from August 2015 he was the assistant to Alberto Giuliani, before continuing with his role at the side of Miroslav Palgut. He participated in two editions of the European Championship – 2013 and 2015 – as an assistant coach. In the last two years, Kravarik also led the AMS Nestor Volleyball club in Greece. Married to Marianna, the couple have a daughter, Michaela.
 
Team Slovakia will start their FIVB World League 2017 campaign on home soil in Poprad. From June 2 to 4, the team will play against Japan, Australia and Portugal.

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