FIVB Men’s Club World Champions turn attention to Superliga
In their first match of the tournament Friday, Sada Cruziero will face Kappesberg Canoas at 20:00 local time at Riacho, em Contagem, gymnasium. The teams will battle for position in the sixth round of the competition, and tests the invincibility of the mining team, which won the first five matches of the tournament.
While the excitement of their recent Club victory still radiates from the team, Brazil’s Wallace Souza – who was named MVP of the tournament, said their attention is now turned to the Superliga.
“Regardless of this achievement, it’s so important to us and Brazil to put our full focus on Superliga,” he said. “We have to go into court, to show the qualities of the team, and prove that it was not by chance that we won the Club World Championship. We need to put into practice what we have worked on in training.”
Friday’s match will be in front on the home crowd, which Wallace says will play an important role in their display on the court.
“Surely the fans will continue doing their part, as they did at the Club Championships where they made a big difference,” he said. “Perhaps there is slightly more pressure on us to be successful now, but the team will be concentrated, as we know the game won’t be easy.”
The possibility of winning a ‘triple-crown’ (three titles in the same season) excites Wallace, who was the second best scorer of the championship.
“There’s no doubt that this cup serves as motivation to try to win all the championships we are competing in this year,” he said. “We know that it is a long competition and the Campeonato Mineiro will put up a touch match, but we’ll try our best to get these wins.”
As for the visitors, the match marks the reunion of coach Marcelo Ramos with Sada Cruzeiro. After five years working with the mining team, the captain said the Kappesberg Canoes are aware of the difficulties, but are thrilled to return to the gym.
“For me, it will be a very special moment because it was a place where I was very well received and made great friends,” Ramos said. “I know the work of Sada Cruzeiro and I know how seriously the team is. We have respect for them in our daily lives, but we’re going to try our best to make some of them falter.
“This beginning has been very complicated, not only by our enemies, but also the problem we had with loss and regularization of the players. We know that we have tried to improve the quality of our play, and we know the responsibility is on the side of the team indicated as favourites, but we’ll start at the edge and try to break down each point.”