2003 FIVB WORLD GRAND PRIX

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Japan - Shoichi Yanagimoto

Shoichi Yanagimoto has been appointed to coach and revitalize the Japanese Women's National Team, a task that he addresses with enthusiasm and experience both as a former national player and as a successful coach.

Now 52, Yanagimoto represented Japan at the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal, Canada, and was the team setter. Japan finished fourth in that tournament. He has coached the Thai Men's National Team (Winner of SEA Games 1985) and the Japanese Junior Men's Team (3rd Place of World Championship 1997).

Also to his credit, he has coached both men's and women's teams to victory in the Japanese National League. He is committed to bringing a news style of coaching to the Japanese women's team which includes introducing to them the style of coaching usually used for the men's team.

His stated aim is to win a place to compete in the Olympic tournament at Athens 2004 and with his motto of "Aggressive, Creative and Exciting Volleyball" he will deploy a combination of tall young players and experienced veterans.