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17th Edition
31 July - 23 August 2009

 JPN / Japan - Team Composition

Team manager ARAKIDA, Yuko (Mrs.) (Week 1, 2, 3 & 4 - Finals)
Head coach MANABE, Masayoshi
Assistant coach ABO, Kiyoshi
Doctor FUJITA, Koji (Week 3 & 4 - Finals)
Therapist / trainer KAWAKITA, Gen
Journalist HASEGAWA, Daisuke (Week 3, 4 - Finals)
  No. Name Lastname Shirt Name Birthdate Height Weight Spike Block Club
  1 Megumi Kurihara Kurihara 31/07/1984 187 69 308 295 Dynamo Kazan
  2   Yuki Kawai Kawai 22/01/1990 169 63 280 275 JT Marvelous
  3 Yoshie Takeshita Takeshita 18/03/1978 159 53 280 270 JT Marvelous
  4   Kaori Inoue Inoue 21/10/1982 182 59 306 300 Denso Airybees
  5 Kazuyo Mori Mori 21/06/1976 175 64 303 291 Okayama Seagulls
  L 6   Yuko Sano Sano 26/07/1979 159 54 260 250 Denso Airybees
  7 Hiroko Okano Okano 25/05/1976 167 58 280 276 OKAYAMA Seagulls
  8   Yuki Ishikawa Ishikawa 11/12/1995 191 84 351 327 Powervolley Milano 
  9 Mizuho Ishida Ishida 22/01/1988 174 65 301 286 Denso Airybees
  10   Yuki Shoji Shoji 19/11/1981 182 67 315 296 VC Wiesbaden
  C 11 Erika Araki Araki 3/08/1984 186 78 305 297 Toyota Auto Body Queenseis
  12   Saori Kimura Saori 19/08/1986 185 65 304 293 Toray Arrows
  13 Maiko Kano Kano 15/07/1988 184 68 305 290
  14   Masami Taniguchi Taniguchi 17/09/1976 177 62 302 292 JT Marvelous
  15 Koyomi Iwasaki Tominaga 1/05/1989 175 68 295 280 Saitama Ageo Medics
  16   Kotoe Inoue Inoue 15/02/1990 163 57 288 275 Denso Airybees
  17 Mai Yamaguchi Yamaguchi 3/07/1983 176 62 304 292 Okayama Seagulls
  18   Maiko Sakashita Sakashita 25/02/1985 180 74 302 296 JT Marvelous
  L 19 Kanari Hamaguchi Hamaguchi 29/08/1985 167 60 283 269 Toray Arrows
 C=Captain  L=Libero
Team profile

After the team's participation in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the Japan Volleyball Association took quick measures to build a new squad aiming at reaching and being successful at the 2012 London Olympics.

Masayoshi Manabe, who heads the Japan champion Hisamitsu Springs, has been appointed as new head coach of the Japanese Women's National Team, taking over the position from Shoichi Yanagimoto.

Yanagimoto led the team since February 2003 and guided Japan to two Olympics: Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008.

Manabe started with the team in April 2009 and will remain until 2012.

Manabe formed his new squad immediately after the V. League, Japan's premier league.

He invited fewer than thirty players to the inaugural training camp. The roster comprised youngsters and veterans alike, including seven Olympians such as Yoshie Takeshita, top setter and former captain, Yuko Sano, top libero, Megumi Kurihara, Saori Kimura and new captain Erika Araki.

Japan has been bringing its young players along since May at international competitions such as the Montreux Volley Masters (Switzerland), the Torino International Tournament (Italy) and the International Tournament for the Cup of the First President of Russia Boris Yeltsin (Russia). With such experience and the support of the older players, it is hoped the newcomers to the squad will be able to express themselves freely on court without worrying about making errors.

Japan used to be a powerhouse in the Women's volleyball, and it will be the challenge of Manabe's squad to put in some unforgettable performances in their upcoming FIVB events, including the 2009 World Grand Prix. 

Coach profile

Masayoshi Manabe, born in Hyogo in 1963, became the new head coach of Japan Women's Team in December 2008, taking over the position from former head coach Shoichi Yanagimoto, who led the team since February 2003.

On his appointment, Manabe told a press conference, "I have participated in the 1988 Seoul Olympics as a player. After watching the 2008 Beijing Olympics outside of the court, however, I felt like participating in the Olympics again as a leader. I want to do my best and aim for the 2012 London Olympics."

As a setter on Japan's Men's Team, Manabe participated in many international events, including the 1988 Seoul Olympics.

He got his first taste of coaching in 1993 at Nippon Steal Blazers (the predecessor of Sakai Blazers), when he led the team as a "player-coach" until 1999. Under his leadership, the team became back-to-back V-League champions in 1996 and 1997. From 1999 to 2005, Manabe focused on his career as a player and moved from team to team.

Since his retirement as a player in 2005, Manabe has been head coach of Hisamitsu Springs, who won 2006-2007 V-Premier League.

The Japanese Women's Team is aiming to medal at the 2012 London Olympics under the powerful leadership of Manabe.

In order to secure a berth at the World Grand Prix this summer, Manabe started the team's first training camp in the middle of May following the 2008/09 V- Premier League and the National Championships.

We believe Manabe is a quiet tactician who has what it takes to make Japan's run at the World Grand Prix a successful one.



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