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Player's Profile 

Eleonora Lo Bianco

A new leader in the ranks

A revamped Italian squad could mean a big change in the career of Italy’s lethal setter Eleonora Lo Bianco. One of three players born in 1979, Lo Bianco is the fourth oldest player in the Italian squad at 25 but with the oldest player at 28, Lo Bianco is preparing to take hold of the reigns of the team in more ways than one.

With the likes of captain Manuela Leggeri, spiking superstar Elisa Togut, courageous 162cm libero Paola Cardullo, Simona Ranieri, Simona Gioli and Francesca Piccinini all missing from the squad of 12 it is definitely a new era for Italian women's Volleyball but it is also a new era for Lo Bianco.

Her strong and bubbly personality has been compressed in recent years with such experienced names playing around her but now the 1.72m setter has the chance to have a real influence on the team as one of the more qualified players in the team.

With over 240 caps to her name, it is this wealth of experience that coach Marco Bonitta will definitely be tapping into, especially as she is one of the only surviving members of the team that won the 2002 World Championship.

“The World Grand Prix is one of the hardest and most interesting Volleyball events in the world,” Lo Bianco said. “Although this is a new era for us I know that we will still compete with the best teams in the world.”

Although Antonella Del Core has been named captain for the World Grand Prix, Lo Bianco is prepared to offer advice and be an inspirational figure, especially when one considers she already knows what it is like to go to the top.

“This year our adventure starts in Reggio Calabria, where we won the silver medal for the first time last year in the final,” she said. “In Reggio we will have a new team, some of my team mates with whom I won the 2002 World Championship are out, but the other teams, don’t delude yourselves! We will fight to the end.

“At the start of the season we showed that we have a strong team but with so many new players in the squad our goal is to make the Final Six. For me, China and Brasil are the favourites, but watch out for Cuba.”

 

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Personal Data

 
 
Shirt No: 14
Age: 38
Height: 171 cm
Highest Spike: 287 cm
Highest Block 273 cm
National Selections
OG: 16 WCH: 29  Others: 473
Actual Club:
Galatasaray Istanbul

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*   “Some of my team mates with whom I won the 2002 World Championship are out, but the other teams, don’t delude yourselves! We will fight to the end.”

“For me, China and Brasil are the favourites, but watch out for Cuba.”
*
 

See also ...

 
 
 Nootsara Tomkom
A setter in Volleyball is often likened to the quarterback in American Football, the centre midfield player in football and the flyhalf in rugby. A team without any of these positions is rudderless and that is exactly how Nootsara Tomkom feels in the Thailand women’s Volleyball squad.
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