CALI, Colombia, November 30, 2021. - According
to the head coaches of the eight participating
teams in the women’s volleyball tournament, the
Junior Pan Am Games are a great opportunity for
a new generation of volleyball players.
Coaches gave their insights ahead of the
competition that starts on Wednesday December 1,
during the general technical meeting held at the
official venue Evangelista Mora Coliseum.
Pablo Martín Ambrosini, head coach of Argentina:
“This is a very important competition, all that
are part of the Olympic cycle and that have the
support of the national sports authorities; we
are facing the best of the continent. We’ve
gathered young players; many with experience in
U18 and U20 world championships and that have
competed in the senior team at the south
American championship and we’ve been practicing
at our development center for this tournament.
We want to play well, which will help us one
game at a time, our group is difficult and it’s
of great level. We will try and play for a
Wagner Coppini, head coach of Brazil:
“This is a really important category because the
gap between junior and senior category is too
big, now the players have an opportunity to
perform internationally, and then reach the
senior category. This is a great international
experience, at a Pan-American highly competitive
Antonio Rizola, assistant coach of Colombia:
“First we are really happy to be in our country.
Our goal is to be in the semifinals. We need to
overcome many problems because 8 of our players
were playing in Europe and are arriving until
today, we didn’t have one single practice
together; today will be the first practice with
all twelve before tomorrow’s match, it will be a
great challenge but I believe that playing at
home will motivate the team a lot. This category
was one that was left out, the players could
only reach as starters at a senior level and had
no chance of playing internationally, now the
competition gives them back the opportunity to
play at a Pan-American level, it’s really
important for their growth”.
Wagner Pacheco, head coach of Dominican
“The team is doing very well, we practiced one
week in Brazil, we had to practice games there
and it’s well prepared. Our goal is to win a
medal, like all the teams here. This is a
different category, a great opportunity for
those players who aren’t part of a senior team
and to take benefit from the experience”.
Luis Alberto León,
head coach of Mexico: “We are really
excited for this new competition, the first
edition of the Games. The team is highly
motivated. Our goals are to fight for a medal
and to qualify for Santiago 2023”.
Francisco Hervas, head coach of Peru:
“We are aware that we have a tough group, Brazil
and Dominican Republic are undisputable
favorites but we will try to reach the
semifinals, which would be a great feat for us”.
Juan Carlos Rodríguez, head coach of Puerto
“From the group that qualified in Aguascalientes
for the Games, we are bringing only two players
(one setter and an outside hitter), the group
studies in college. We’ve had four practices
because it was difficult recruiting U23 players
as most of them aren’t studying in Puerto Rico.
I liked my team during the first practices, we
are well in every position and we will improve
as the tournament develops”.
Miquel Misidjang, head coach of Suriname:
“I think it was a good decision to organize this
tournament, good for the players to see how
other countries are working and performing, so
they can work on themselves; and also for the
coaches to follow the development of other
countries. My team is well prepared, we competed
at the U23 Pan American Cup and we didn’t make
many changes from that group; we´ve be
practicing for three months and playing games
for this event”.