Asian Championships set new challenges for Volleyroos

-

ASIAN CHAMPIONSHIPS SET NEW CHALLENGES FOR VOLLEYROOS

The Australian men’s volleyball team begins its Asian Championships campaign later today determined to confirm their status as one of the powerhouse teams of the region.

Australia goes into the event ranked second behind host nation, Iran, and with a current world ranking of 13.

India will be Australia’s toughest opponent in pool play, with a world ranking of 39, with Qatar (45) and Turkmenistan (141) the other two teams in the group.

A change in the Olympic qualification process has removed some of the pressure on the Volleyroos in Tehran, but coach Roberto Santilli says his team needs to make a statement.

“I’m feeling confident, and I think the team is feeling confident,” Santilli said.

“If you think we have less pressure because of the change in rules, that is not correct. We add pressure to the guys because from the beginning of this preparation we have said we want to go to Tehran for a big result.

“We want to go there with the idea we can be competitive for first place. If we want to build the mentality of the group to fight at high level we have to go there and fight for first place.”

Initially Australia had to finish top three next week to qualify for the Olympic qualification tournament, but with the emphasis now on current Asian rankings, the Volleyroos are already through to the qualifiers.

Australia will be expected to perform strongly in Iran after its first season in the top division of World League.

But Santilli said the experience of playing in the best competition in the world will throw up extra challenges.

“The most difficult game will be the first game (against Qatar), because we come from a different level,” he said.

“World League is the best volleyball you can play, so we have to adjust to a new rhythm and style.”

Australia will welcome back experienced opposite, Paul Carroll, after a knee injury which sidelined him from the World League campaign.

“He is so important, absolutely important,” Santilli said.

“He’s physically okay, and with his return the level of the competition in the team lifts. And he is an experienced player, and this is a young group of players so absolutely, he is a very important player for us.”

The Volleyroos take on Qater late Friday night, followed by Turkmenistan on Saturday evening and India on Sunday night.

Women volleyroos look to future after 2015 Grand Prix

-

BARNARD CALLS FOR MORE SUPPORT TO HELP ACHIEVE OLYMPIC DREAM

The Australian women’s volleyball team has finished the 2015 Grand Prix series without a win, with head coach Mark Barnard pleading for more support for the sport to succeed.

The Australians were unable to finish with a win in the finals series in Canberra, the first time the team has played in Australia since the Sydney 2000 Olympics.

The Volleyroos lost the bronze medal playoff to Colombia, 3-0 (25-12, 25-22, 25-16) while Kenya won the gold medal and promotion to Group 2 in 2016 with a shock 21-25, 25-17, 25-22, 25-23 win over Peru.

Barnard said Australia was only able to compete in this year’s Grand Prix because of the generous support of backers like Hancock Prospecting, and for the team to make Tokyo in 2020 more help would be needed.

“We cannot do it under the current way that things are done,” he said.

“You can’t just play two tournaments a year, train for two weekends and then go to Tokyo. It’s unrealistic.”

While the Australian men’s indoor team, and the men’s and women’s beach teams, all get Government funding, there is no money for the women’s program because it is not considered a realistic medal prospect in the short term.

But Australia has jumped from a world ranking of 100 to 46 in under a year, and Barnard believes the team will continue to improve if the conditions are right.

“If the situation changes, and we have a place where the players can train regularly, get strength and conditioning, then Tokyo becomes a realistic goal,” he said.

“If it stays like this, then 2024 should be more of a consideration. We have to do some things tomorrow, realistically, if we are going to get there.”

Sunday’s match against Colombia also signaled the end of the career of setter Lauren Bertolacci, who is about to take up a role as coach of a professional men’s team in Switzerland.

Despite playing for Australia for more than a decade, this weekend was the first time she had the opportunity to play for her country in Australia.

30-year-old Bertolacci, said while she was sad to finish her playing career, she is excited about the future – and would one day like to coach an Australian team.

“It would be nice, wouldn’t it,” she said.

“I’d love to. Of course I’d be interested. 100 per cent.

“To be honest, before the game I didn’t even think about my retirement. But at the end I looked around, and thought this was a pretty good way to go out. It was pretty emotional.”

International Women's Volleyball Comes to Canberra

-

Volleyball Australia is pleased to announce that it will throw the doors open at the Finals of the World Women’s Grand Prix offering all spectators the opportunity to see world class women’s volleyball for the first time since 2000 Olympics at a door entry price of just $5.

Two major sponsors have come on board to support the hosting of world women’s volleyball, comparable to the World League of Men’s Volleyball which completed this weekend in Melbourne.

BendonLingerie.com and Hancock Prospecting have both underwritten the hosting of the event to ensure equality of opportunity for our women’s Volleyroos and to continue the commitment of Volleyball Australia to gender equality in all aspects of the delivery of volleyball in Australia. 

“As the world’s largest gender equal team sport, its imperative we build the profile and opportunities for our Women Volleyroos.  For too long a lack of government funding has dictated a lack of focus but last year Volleyball Australia committed to delivering to our women’s team a rebuilding program towards Tokyo 2020.  The World Women’s Grand Prix is the ideal event for our Volleyroos who have competed in Kazakhstan and Algeria in the preliminary rounds ahead of the Group 3 Finals this weekend at the AIS Arena in Canberra.”

The World Women’s Grand Prix will be the first world women’s volleyball event hosted in Australia since Sydney 2000 and Volleyball Australia implores volleyball and women’s sport supporters to attend the event and support in numbers the Volleyroos as they take on Columia,, Peru and Kenya in the finals this weekend in an event televised globally.

Matches start at 4pm Saturday, with Columbia playing Peru, and the the Volleyroos will take on Kenya at 7pm.  Sunday's finals are set for 1pm and 4pm.

Get your tickets online at http://eventopia.co/WGP2015

 

Volleyball Australia is delighted to announce that Australia’s mens indoor Volleyroos will play host to the World League in 2014 and for the first time in the history of the World League will host the Finals for Group 2. In Pool C of Group 2,  the Volleyroos will be joined by Finland, Belgium and Canada to compete in the intercontinental home and away rounds. The Volleyroos will play 3 home round matches versus Finland at the AIS Arena  on the 7and 8 June, Belgium at the Adelaide Arena on the 27 and 28 June, and Canada at the Sydney Olympic Park Sports Centre on the 5 and 6 July. The round games will be followed by the final Final four play off which will include Australia as the host nation to be held at the Sydney Olympic Park Sports Centre on the 11 and 12 July. The winner of this Finals series will advance to join the top two from each pool in Group 1 in addition to the hosts Italy.

The Volleyroos stunned the world when they took the number one ranking spot in Asia in 2012 to qualify for the London Olympic Games and narrowly missed a quarter final play off after a stellar performance by the youngest team at the Olympics which included beating world powerhouse Poland. This effort raised the ranking of the Volleyroos from 22 to number 11 in the world. In 2013, Australia played host at the AIS Arena to the Asian World Championship Qualifying tournament which the Volleyroos won to see them advance to the 2014 World Championships to be held in Poland in 2014.

Volleyball Australia President, Craig Carracher said, “We cannot underestimate the significance of Australia competing in and hosting the World League rounds and Finals for the Volleyroos quest to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and for the development and growth of the game in Australia. I would like to  thank the FIVB for their support of Volleyball Australia in once again bringing international matches to our shores and I urge all of Australia to get behind the Volleyroos and cheer them on at their home rounds and in the Final four series”.

Volleyroos Head Coach, the dynamic Jon Uriarte has applauded the efforts of Volleyball Australia to provide the Volleyroos this outstanding opportunity to participate in the World League for the first time since 1999 and to be able to compete against world class competition on home soil. Jon said, “I am thrilled for this opportunity for the team. They are a  young team and continually need to be playing high quality international competitors to give them the best chance of qualifying for Rio 2016 which they will now have!”.

 Volleyball Australia has risen to the challenge of meeting the criteria of podium performances  established by the Australian Institute of Sport under its Winning Edge high performance strategy. Judy Flanagan, Volleyball Australia CEO said, ”With the support of the FIVB,we have set have  an ambitious international hosting agenda to continue to place Australia on the global stage in one of the largest global sports as a force to be reckoned with. There is nothing like playing in front of a large, passionate and vocal home crowd so save the dates in Canberra, Adelaide and Sydney and come on down to  support the Volleyroos in their World League endeavours and their 2016 Rio quest”.

The ticket and corporate box sales program will be announced shortly.

For any queries please contact:

Judy Flanagan

CEO

0407933011

 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

FIVB Announcement: Historic World League calendar to culminate in Florence, Italy

WOMEN

BEACH

Image not available

MEN