San Juan, Puerto Rico, March 29, 2005 - With four months remaining for the start of the Women’s U-20 World Championship, the Puerto Rico National Team knows which its rivals are and can evaluate the real options for a finish among the top eight places of the event.
Puerto Rico qualified to this world competition as the third best team of the Norceca’s Tournament played in Winnipeg, Canada last year. In that event, the Puerto Ricans defeated the teams of Cuba and Canada, who included Sarah Pavan, its best prospect. In the semi finals, the Puerto Ricans lost to USA in four well fought sets.
In the Drawing of Lots for the Championship held in Ankara, Turkey, Puerto Rico was included in Pool B and will play the preliminary round against Russia, China, Italy, Egypt and Dominican Republic.
Pool A is composed by teams from Turkey, USA, Brazil, Croacia, Serbia & Montenegro and Japan.
It is the fifth time that Puerto Rico take part in this category’s World Championship. The previous occasions were in 1981 in Mexico; 1989 in Peru; 1991 in China Taipei and 2003 in Thailand.
In accordance to the competition format established by the FIVB, the top two teams of each pool will advance to the semi finals and the teams who finish in third and fourth places will define the positions from fifth to eighth.
Among the players battling for a position as members of the U-20 Puerto Rican Team are Saraí Álvarez, Vanessa Vélez, Yarimar Rosa, Gabrielle Rivera, Roselly Pérez, Laudevis Marrero, Angie Lastra, Jessica López and Daris Nicole Rodríguez. The group has several weeks training under the supervision of coaches Luis "Papo" García and Jorge Pérez Vento.