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Coaches anticipate duel between Cuba and Trinidad & Tobago

Coaches of women's teams (from left to right) Henry Delfina (CUR), Francisco Cruz (TTO), Juan Carlos Gala (CUB) and Frederic Francois (HAI) at the NORCECA Pool Q in Havana on Tuesday evening
Havana, Cuba, May 14, 2014 – While the coaches of Cuba and Trinidad and Tobago put the finishing touches to their strategies for the crucial match between their two forces, those at the helm of teams Curacao and Haiti only want their sides to do their best in Pool Q of the NORCECA Qualification Tournament for the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship that will kick off on Wednesday. 

Following the General Technical Meeting at Hotel Bella Habana headed by Bertha Cuadra as Control Committee Supervisor, the coaches made their comments about their objectives for this competition that runs until Saturday at Ciudad Deportiva Coliseum with two daily matches. 

Trinidad and Tobago’s coach Francisco Cruz: “After eight active years (of participation), we are coming here looking to qualify above all things. It is not simple but rather a very tough task. We are here to fight for the qualification because the next round is going to be even tougher. It will be very difficult for my team and the Cuban team to play against teams who play good defence because they are capable of upsetting our teams. For example, in the last NORCECA Championship, our teams lost to Mexico because their defensive capabilities stopped us.” 

Cuba’s coach Juan Carlos Gala: “Our fundamental goal is to qualify to the FIVB World Championship and the team is capable to do so. My only concern is that we did not have enough training prior to this competition, although we were able to put together a boys’ team to play some scrimmage with my team. I really believe they will improve as the tournament progresses before their match against Trinidad and Tobago, who are an experienced team that has been together for a couple of years and some of their players have been playing in Europe. I have a lot of respect for their team but my team is ready for them. Their coaches are both Cubans, who knows our characteristics, but we also know them, and our job is to prepare a good tactical plan to adjust to their style.” 

Haiti’s coach Frederic Francois: “Our team has five players who are under 15 years old and have only played in the Virgin Islands in 2012. We are making our young players gain experience since we know we are facing the tough teams of NORCECA. This is a good preparation for the CAZOVA Tournament in Trinidad and Tobago in July. We know that Cuba and Trinidad and Tobago are the two biggest threats and it will be difficult to defeat these teams, but we will try our best anyway."

Curaçao coach Henry Delfina: “We are prepared to continue playing in the next qualification round which is a playoff in Trinidad and Tobago, that’s our goal. The competition is going to be very tough because the teams are at the same level. The tournament will be a real battle.”


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