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Tough challenge lies ahead for Trentino Diatec in Betim

Coaches of the eight clubs taking part in this year's FIVB Club World Championship in Betim, Brazil
Betim, Brazil, October 14, 2013 – Trentino Diatec are currently on the crest of the wave following their triumph in the Men’s Italian Super Cup three days ago to surprise more than a few skeptics who didn’t rate them as a sure bet for this year.

Now it is time for the FIVB Men’s Club World Championship in Betim, Brazil, and the coach Roberto Serniotti is optimistic about his team’s chances of scoring another big surprise here where eight teams start competing on Tuesday for the club world’s supremacy.

Italian teams have won the all eight editions of the competition, including four times by the Trentino Diatec Club.

“We know that it is going to be more difficult this year because the team was renovated," Serniotti said during the press conference held after the conclusion of the general technical meeting. “We need to play match by match and our first target is to get into the semifinals as the first in our pool.”

“We are going to do the best possible to defend the result of last year,” he added. “And all the players want to play as best as possible.”

One team that could jeopardize the winning streak of teams from Italy is Brazil’s Sada Cruzeiro, coached by Argentinean Marcelo Méndez, who finished second last year when the event took place in Doha, Qatar.

“We know this is very difficult championship but our expectations are the same as usual: To be the winners,” Méndez said. “There are many strong teams but I believe that we have prepared strong enough to play a finale.”

“Our team always played good in front of the home crowd and I think it will be the same time,” Méndez said about his team playing a double role as host country and also host city.

Russian teams have been increasingly successful lately and Andrey Voronov expressed a very simple philosophy when he took time to analyze the chances of his Lokomotiv Novosibirsk.

“Our goal is simple: we need to win every game,” Voronov stated. “We are playing this competition for the first time and we know it is hard, but we will try to win every game.”

Iran’s men volleyball has been considering as an emerging power from Asia and Kalleh Sports Club is certainly a threat to cause some damage here.

“The progress of Iranian volleyball was very good last year and the year before,” Coach Ataei Nouri Behrouz said. “Our first goal is to reach the semifinals because we made some changes after winning the Asian Cup and some players were at the Men’s U23 and our practice was not very good.”

The state of Minas Gerais has become very familiar for Coach Fabian Armoa and his UPCN Volley Club from Argentina since this the third time they come to play here in 2013.

“We already know a little of here after the South American Club Championship and some friendly matches,” Armoa said. “We are very proud to be here with great teams and being part of the tournament. Our goal is to be playing on Sunday.”

Masashi Nambu, coach of the Panasonic Panthers of Japan wants his team to show their defensive strong game which is part of the Asian style of the game.

“We got an invitation from Sada Cruzeiro and FIVB and we are happy at this opportunity to show the best of Japanese volleyball,” Nambu said. “We want to grow with the tournament and be able to get into the semifinals.”

Osiel Vazquez, the Cuban coach of Dominican Republic’s La Romana Club said this will be a learning experience for both him and his team.

“It is our first time and I am sure it is going to be quite an experience for us,” Vazquez commented. “We have a good team and I hope the boys will be able to give a good show of volleyball in the first match and the next ones.”

Finally, Ben Mustapha Mohamed coach of Tunisia’s Club Sportif Sfaxien admitted they are not among the teams to make the cut after the preliminary phase.

“We know we are not the favorites,” he said. “But we are here to represent Africa and Tunisia hoping to get at least one victory.”

He added: “Just being part of this world championship is a dream for coaches and players and that’s a reason to celebrate.”


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