FIVB - Volleyball World League

Press release

Winning only one match was sad: Orlando Samuels

Coach Orlando Samuels felt sad about Cuba's performance in this year's World League

 Havana, Cuba, July 6, 2013 – Iran beat Cuba in four sets (22-25, 25-20, 25-18, 25-22) on Saturday, leaving the Cubans frustrated by their performances in this year’s FIVB World League.

Veteran coach Orlando Samuels commented: “[Cuba has] a competitive team, but we were forced by circumstances to improvise, make too many changes and use very young players. We’ve never been last in any pool; that’s regrettable. Winning only one match was sad.”

Cuba’s Abraham Alonso promised that next year would be better for Cuba: “This was a tough year, but our ending was promising.”

Iran captain Mir Saeid Marouflakrani admitted his team started slowly: “We don’t really know what happened to us in the first sets. We were aware that the Cubans wouldn’t give up, and I’m sure they fought as hard as they could. We proved that last night’s victory wasn’t by chance. The teamwork was the key to our victory, plus our defence. I believe that very few of us expected a result as good as this, playing as visitors.”

Argentinean Julio Velasco, coach of Iran, valued the two victories over Cuba: “We made some mistakes that allowed Cuba to take the opening set, but later we troubled them with our serves. We had problems counterattacking, but the blocks worked out well. The victory was very important for us. We have to understand that the Cuban players are very young and inexperienced.  They only need time, and they have a great coach who will lead them to better results. But there are no miracles in this game. It’s perfectly normal they have ups and downs.” 

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