Tokyo, August 5, 2007: Comments from the Japan-Cuba press conference at Ariake Colosseum on Sunday evening:
Head Coach Antonio Perdomo: Today's match was impressive because the audience cheered so loud. The Japanese serve and defence was great, and this made the match very difficult for us. On the other hand, Cuba's serve was unstable and we made many small mistakes. This caused us to lose a lot of points.
Captain Yumillka Ruiz: From the start of the match our play became better gradually, and we were at our best at the end. So this was a very good game for us.
Head Coach Shoichi Yanagimoto: Qualifying for the World Grand Prix finals, the goal was to win -- but we could not manage it. A loss is a loss. As we play more and more matches we have become better; we would like to do more in the next three matches and bring our level up. The team balance has become better and better compared to 2005 and 2006, so the players could play more relaxed and they could aim for a better position in the world.
Captain Yoshie Takeshita: The total score difference was not so important today. We could have reduced the number of misses as a team. Although there were misses from the Cuban team, it is a shame that we could not win. I would like to reflect on the misses we have made today so that we will be ready for the next three matches.
Megumi Kurihara: We played the full sets but our skill was not enough. The level of the team should improve and we have to be able to do what we could not achieve today, and play better next time. Since the Olympics I have been trying to not only improve my volleyball technique but also build up my physical condition. When the Cubans began to read my spikes, I had to think more about where to place my shots.
Yuki Shoji: I wanted to win the match today but I will get over my regret and do my best in the next match. I was conscious of the height and the power of the Cuban team but as I played against them I started to think where they are doing their block, and next time I want to bring my skills up and attack more.
Miyuki Takahashi: We should improve our play by thinking of the mistakes we made today.