Thursday, 24 May 2018
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Press Info - Press Conference
Chen: We did it

Cuba Captain Yumilka Ruiz and Eugenio George Lafita
CHEN Zhonghe (CHN) - coach 
On the match:
"Cuba is our friend. Over the past years and even in this year, we had lots of matches together. In the preliminaries, we lost to them. At that time, the Cuban coach said that he hoped that we could meet in the final and compete for the Gold. Unfortunately, both of us didn't make it to the Gold medal match."
"In today's match, we delivered a stable psychological state considering that the day before yesterday we lost to Brazil and many players cried. How to adjust their mental state was a big problem for us. Fortunately, we made it today. To beat the Cuban team is a tough job. But today they were too eager to win, so they made too many mistakes. They didn't deliver their best performance."
On captain FENG Kun's (CHN) performance:
"I should say that for FENG Kun it's been really difficult for her to make it to these Olympic Games. A few years ago, the doctor told her that she wouldn't possibly be reaching these Olympics. Her physical capacity wasn't good enough, but she tried her best and trained hard and stuck it out until the end of the Olympics."
On injuries of the veteran players:
"After we moved into the Olympic Village, some of the players' injuries got more serious. We iced FENG Kun's (CHN) injuries two or three times during each training session, and gave her injections in the middle of the tournament to get her onto the court."
"As for ZHAO Ruirui (CHN), she was in a good state at the beginning, but after the match against Japan, her injury got serious. We had to give her injections so that she could go onto the court. But the injections were not so effective, so she wasn't playing to her full potential, especially in blocking and attacking."
"After the match against Brazil, ZHOU Suhong (CHN) couldn't walk because she had a stomach-ache, and her old injuries hurt. What's more she was emotionally down. Before this match I was worried whether these players could play their proper roles. It was not easy for the old players, but they fought till the end."
On the tournament:
"I take part of the responsibility for the loss to Cuba and to the USA, and the loss to Brazil. I didn't control the players' emotions, and they got too eager to win. But I'm still happy with this tournament, although we didn't get a Gold or Silver medal, we tried."
Antonio PERDOMO (CUB) - head coach
On the loss:
"The Bronze medal is not Gold, but in spite of that it still has a lot of value. In these Olympic Games, it's been hard because from the beginning there were five or six teams that were all of the same level, and that could have won."
"We lost against two teams (USA, China) we had beaten in qualifying matches (in the preliminaries). If we were to play them again you never know the result, because so many of the teams are of the same level."
"Our girls had lots of hopes of getting to the final, especially because we beat USA in the preliminaries. I think we were too confident. Maybe we trusted ourselves too much, and that's what happened against the USA (3-0 semifinal loss) and that influenced today."
On missing out on a medal after a legacy of Cuban medallists:
"Historically there was a time when Russia were the champions, and there was a time when the Japanese were the champs, and for 10 years uninterrupted the Cubans were the champs. Nothing is absolute."
"Since the last Olympics, our level has dropped a lot. We lost the Panamericans, the American Cup, and the Central American tournaments. But then we started to recover. Getting fourth place in an Olympic Games is by no means insignificant, and the Cuban Volleyball team is by no means on its way out. We could have got a medal, but that's life."
On why she cried after the match:
"During this Olympics, we've been through many ups and downs. We were faced with difficulties, challenges, setbacks and even failures. These four years haven't been easy for us, but the most important thing was to fight with my teammates, to walk side by side, until today's game."
"We were excited, especially the older players. This might be their last Olympic Games. That's why we were so emotional."
On whether she is satisfied with the Bronze Medal:
"This is a sport, it's normal to have winners and losers. But as long as we fight, there's no disappointment. We always look forward, and every player who stands on the court does their best to hold on to the last."
"To be standing on the court at an Olympics is a success in itself for me. Every player who stands on an Olympic court wants a Gold. But for me, I just tell myself to fight for every ball and every point. It's not important to win a Gold or a Silver or a Bronze. The most important thing is to be with your team, and to fight till the very end."
Yumilka RUIZ (CUB) - captain
On the match:
"Today our team tried to do what we had to do, but things didn't work the way we wanted them to."
On the decline in the Cuba team's performance over the course of the Olympics:
"I think our mistakes are in the offense, and especially in blocking. Those aspects of our game didn't work during the matches against USA (semifinal loss, 3-0) and China (loss, 3-1)."