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Coaches sound plenty optimistic before the start in Aruba

From left to right: Coaches Petronia (CUR), Fritzroy (ANT), Salas (CRC) and van der Lee (ARU) before the start of the men's world qualifier in Aruba

Oranjestad, Aruba, May 17, 2013 – On the eve of the start of the action at the NORCECA Second Round Group L of the FIVB Men’s World Championship, the coaches of the four participating teams displayed confidence as they analyzed their chances of advancing to next year’s third and final round.

They made their comments following the preliminary enquiry carried out by the members of the control committee at The Mill Resort & Suites on Friday.

As the top ranked NORCECA team in the tournament, Costa Rica appears as a pre-event favorite given their status and previous international experience.

Costa Rican coach Cesar Salas is confident about the chances of his side pointing out the good rhythm attained by the squad following a silver medal at the Central American Games.

“We have a team that is coming with a good rhythm from the Central American Games,” Salas said. “Our objective is to qualify to the next round even though we don’t know about our opponents. Our guys are ready to meet the challenge.”

Aruba’s Coach John van der Lee seems to have a better idea about their opponents after watching many videos of Costa Rica and personally scouting Curacao in recent competitions.

“I have watched Costa Rica and Curacao and I would say that our chances are 90 percent to go further,” van der Lee firmly stated. “Our goal is to stay here to play in the next round and that’s the first thing we want to do.

“We will take game by game but all the guys want to go further,” he added.

Hubert Petronia, the coach of Curacao, admitted the strength of Costa Rica and its condition as the team to beat.

“We don’t underestimate Aruba and Antigua & Barbuda, but Costa Rica is a good team so the match against them is very important to get a good result,” Petronia said. “We practiced very hard and we have to play to reach the finals. The expectations of the players are very high.”

Antigua & Barbuda’s Benjamin Fritzroy admitted not being familiar with teams like Curacao and Costa Rica but said he is confident about the talent of his team.

“We are prepared and most of our players have been together for almost five years now,” Fritzroy said. “We have only two players over 30 years old and most of our athletes are under 25. One of our players (Colin Thomas) is based in USA and we expect some help from him.”



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