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Pool D contenders in upbeat mood

The coaches in Pool D (L-R): Vladimir Kuzyutkin (Russia), Yu Juemin (China), Arnd Ludwig (Canada), Marcos Kwiek (Dominican Republic), Mehmet Bedestenlioglu (Turkey) and Sam-Ryong Park (Korea)

Osaka, Japan, October 28, 2010 - The coaches of the six teams in Osaka-based Pool D met the media on Thursday and all expressed optimism about their chances in the 2010 FIVB Women's World Championship which begins on Friday across Japan.

China's Yu Juemin noted the fact that the tournament provides a special opportunity for his team to show their worth on the big stage. "This competition only comes around once every four years," he said. "I want to make this a test for my players because we have some new players."

China are ranked third in the world and will take on Turkey in their opening match on Friday night. "We are proud to be in Japan," said the Turkey coach, Mehmet Nuri Bedestenlioglu. "We are in a difficult pool. Our goal is to move forward to the next round."

Vladimir Kuzyutkin, coach of defending world champions Russia, wished all of his competitors well but was keen to see how his new-look side will perform. "We have almost an entirely new team," he said. "We usually have three or four new players for an event like this, but two years ago we replaced half the team. Our goal is to play good Volleyball. I must ensure that our new players gain the necessary experience to perform at this level."

Russia, currently ranked seventh, kick off Pool D when they take on the Dominican Republic on Friday afternoon. The Dominican coach, Marcos Kwiek, was aware that his side face tough challenges in Osaka. "We are one of the best 24 teams in the world," he said. "Pool D is a strong one and we have a young team. We are well prepared. I intend to bring out the best in my players."

Canada's Arnd Ludwig made no secret of the fact that this event will be a learning experience for his charges. "We have a young and inexperienced team here," he said. "None of them have ever played a world championship match before. We hope to have the chance to advance from this group."

Canada play Korea in their opening match on Friday afternoon. Korean coach Sam-Ryong Park made his goal very clear. "I'm happy to be here and it is a strong pool. My goal is to make it to Tokyo."

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