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FIVB Men’s Volleyball Club World Championship
Doha, Qatar
3-8 November 2009



 Press Release
Busy Zenit Kazan aiming for world domination

Russian champions Zenit Kazan
Lausanne, October 1, 2009 — It will be a busy year for Russia’s representative at the 2009 FIVB Men’s Club World Volleyball Championship in Doha, Qatar from November 3-8.

For the first time in the team’s history, Zenit Kazan will play in five official tournaments at the same time. In addition to the Russian championship, Russian Cup and Supercup, Zenit will also play in the Indesit European Champions League and Club World Championship.

It will not be easy for Zenit to defend its title as Russian champion, as main rivals Dinamo Moscow and Ural Ufa have become much stronger over the summer. The team will get a taste of just how strong Dinamo is on October 3, when the two teams clash in the Russian Supercup.

Having conquered Russia, Zenit is now aiming to claim the European and world titles. Zenit`s American captain and setter Lloy Ball is optimistic about his team’s chances.

“Of the four years I have been playing here, the team we have now is the best,” Ball said. “I feel there will be victories. I think Trentino BetCilic will be our main competitor at the Club World Championship, but the other teams can spring a surprise or two, especially with the new rules (Golden Formula) in play during the tournament.”

The Golden Formula, to be trialed for the first time at an FIVB tournament in Doha, requires that the first attack for each team begins from the back row in an attempt to produce longer rallies.

Kazan’s coach, Vladimir Alekno, says his players are eager to take on the world’s best teams in Doha this November.

“The Club World Championship appeals to us greatly,” Alekno said. “If we were not driven we wouldn’t agree to participate in it. Even our best players, Olympic champions Lloy Ball and Clayton Stanley, are motivated to win the tournament.”

Zenit is the youngest team in the Russian championship, having formed just 10 years ago. In that time, however, the Kazan club has already achieved a great number of victories. In the 2003/2004 season, the team made its debut in the Russian elite division and won the bronze medal. The team’s leaders at the time were Igor Shulepov, Ruslan Olikhver and Dmitry Fomin, whose encouraging performances helped Zenit win the national cup the same year.

In the 2004/05 season, the team once again won bronze in the league, but lost to French club Tourcoing Lille Métropole in its first appearance in the CEV Cup.

Before the start of the 2005/06 season, Fomin and several other key players left the team due to injuries. The players were irreplaceable and further injuries resulted in a poor sixth-place finish in the league.

Things began to change ahead of the 2006/07 season, when the Kazan club, then known as Dinamo Tattransgas, brought in many new faces, including American stars Ball and Clayton Stanley, and Russian National Team members Vadim Khamuttskikh, Sergey Tetyukhin, Andrey Egorchev and Alexander Kosarev.

The influx of fresh new talent paid immediate dividends as the club, in its seventh year, became Russian champion on May 13, 2007 when it defeated Dinamo Moscow in the fifth and final game of the Russian league playoffs.

The next year was the most successful in the team’s history. Zenit won the Russian Cup for the second time and then won the prestigious Indesit European Champions League. Stanley was named that tournament’s MVP, while Alexander Bogomolov was named the best blocker in the final round.

Former Russian National Team coach Alekno took the helm at Zenit in the offseason, and at first the team was unable to emulate the success of the previous season. Kazan crashed out of the Supercup and failed to reach the Final Four of the Indesit European Champions League.

But the club nevertheless won the Russian league title for the second time, beating Iskra Odintsovo in the final.

Last summer saw the departure of veteran Alexey Bovduy, Pavel Zaytsev, Alexander Korneev and Artem Ermakov. Incoming players included Russian National Team spiker Sergey Tetyukhin and one of the best liberos in the world Alexey Verbov.

Team Composition

No.

Name

Lastname

Shirt Name

Nat.

Birthdate

Position

Height

1

Lloy

Ball

Ball

USA

17/02/1972

setter

203

3

Nikolay

Apalikov

Apalikov

RUS

26/08/1982

middle blocker

202

5

Alexander

Bogomolov

Bogomolov

RUS

01/02/1976

middle blocker

208

7

Maxim

Panteleymonenko

Panteleymonenko

RUS

01/09/1981

spiker

202

8

Sergey

Tetyukhin

Tetyukhin

RUS

23/09/1975

spiker

197

9

Alexey

Cheremisin

Cheremisin

RUS

23/09/1980

diagonal

204

11

Anton

Kulikovsky

Kulikovsky

RUS

04/03/1982

spiker

198

12

Denis

Garkushenko

Garkushenko

RUS

09/02/1977

setter

191

13

 

Clayton

Stanley

Stanley

USA

20/01/1978

diagonal

205

14

Alexander

Abrosimov

Abrosimov

RUS

25/08/1983

middle blocker

207

16

Alexey

Verbov

Verbov

RUS

31/01/1982

libero

183

17

Vladislav

Babichev

Babichev

RUS

18/02/1981

libero

185

Team manager     Lenar SHAMSUTDINOV

Head coach         Vladimir ALEKNO

Assistant coach    Alexander SEREBRENNIKOV

Doctor               Yury TREGUBOV

Therapist / trainer Sergey Alexeev

Trainer-statistics   Vladimir Pisarev, Mikhail Kuzovenin

Masseur              Ramis Shiriyazdanov, Minsur Mukhametzanov

Journalist            Almaz KHAIROV

Coach Profile

Kazan head coach Vladimir Alekno started his Volleyball career in 1984 with the SKA Minsk Volleyball team. He later played for CSKA, Bulgaria's Levski, Italy's Asti and Spoletto and France's Cannes and Tours.

Alekno was the head coach of Tours from 1999-2004, where he won the cup and league in 2003. In 2004 he led the team to bronze at the European Champions League.

A year later Alekno became the head coach of Dinamo Moscow and guided the team to the Russian league and cup titles in 2006.

From March 1, 2007 to September 2008, Alekno headed the Russian Men's National Team, leading them to three silver medals in 2007 in the FIVB World League, European Championship and FIVB World Cup, as well as a bronze medal at the Olympic Games in Beijing in 2008.

Alekno joined Zenit Kazan on July 1, 2008, and under his guidance, the team won the Russian Championship last season.

Alekno was born on December 4, 1966 and is married with two children.

Club Titles

Indesit European Champions League winner (2008)

Russian Championship winner (2007, 2009)

Cup of Russia winner (2004, 2007)

Russian Championship bronze medalist (2004, 2005, 2008)

  
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  Photo gallery