‘This year is different!’
The women’s volleyball team, suffering from growing pains for a generational change, departed today (22nd) to compete in the Volleyball Nations League (VNL) of the International Volleyball Federation, the first international competition in 2023.
16 players, including coach Han Yu-mi and staff, and captain Park Jeong-ah (Korea Expressway Corporation), left the departure hall of Incheon International Airport to board a plane heading to Turkey.
Kim Yeon-kyung (Heungkuk Life Insurance), who joined the national team as an advisor, left the country separately.
Kim Yeon-kyung will return home during the first week of VNL, in line with her Heungkuk life training schedule.
After arriving in Istanbul, Turkey, the national team will move on to Antalya, where the VNL Week 1 will be held.
Coach Cesar Gonzalez, who also serves as the coach of the Turkish women’s professional volleyball Vakifbank, will join the national team in Turkiye.
The Korean national team will play their first game against Turkiye on June 1st, then face Canada (2nd), USA (3rd) and Thailand (4th) in turn.
Afterwards, they moved to Brasilia, Brazil, to meet Brazil (June 15), Japan (16), Croatia (17) and Germany (19).
Week 3 will be held in Suwon, South Korea.
South Korea will play Bulgaria on June 27, Dominican Republic on June 29, China on July 1, and Poland on July 2 to close the qualifying schedule.
The Finals Tournament will be held July 13-17 in Arlington, Texas, USA.
In last year’s VNL, Korea lost all 12 matches and did not get a point.
The gap between Kim Yeon-kyung, Yang Hyo-jin (Hyundai Construction), and Kim Su-ji (Heungkuk Life Insurance), who announced their retirement from the national team after leading Korea to the semifinals at the Tokyo Olympics held in 2021, was too great.
In 2022, the Korean women’s volleyball team only won 1-16 in international competitions (VNL 12, World Championship 1-4), and the FIVB world ranking fell to 23rd.
Coach Han Yu-mi, whom we met before departure, said, “Our players want to win more than anyone else. We will do our best in every game.” I’m ready. I hope to return to Suwon after winning one win each in Turkiye and Brazil.”
Park Jung-ah, who wore the armband as captain of the national team this year as well as last year, said, “I want to come back with a smile after the first and second weeks of VNL.” “I couldn’t do it. However, the painful experience is also an experience. I gained experience last year, so I will be able to show a better performance this year.”
Coach Gonzalez emphasized to coach Han Yu-mi the teamwork between the setter and striker, the fast movement of the wing striker and middle blocker, and the aggressive serve.
One coach said, “There are players who were first selected for the national team, but most of them are playing as a starting player in their team. I have a high understanding of volleyball, so I completed the domestic convocation training efficiently.” The players are also well aware of the importance of the Taegeuk mark. I want to play a good match in Turkey and Brazil and meet Korean fans in Suwon.”
Although the results of recent international competitions have plummeted, there are still many fans who support Korean women’s volleyball.먹튀검증
On this day, dozens of fans visited Incheon International Airport to cheer for the players participating in the VNL.