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06 Jun

The world knows that she is one of the best volleyball players our generation has ever seen but this FIVB article would for sure surprise you about the Korean volleyball superstar Kim Yeon Koung.

In the said article, the MVP of the 2012 Olympics reveals her life outside volleyball. She runs a sports academy for the youth & has founded a small charity.

“I am currently running a sports youth academy in Korea. Many children of different ages attend the academy and participate in volleyball, football, basketball and other sports activities. The reason why I established the academy was because I wanted to give back all the goodness that volleyball has given me. As time went by, I realised the importance of youth sports, since children who participate in sports activities become more sociable and healthy individuals.

I also hosted the first youth volleyball competition under my name in 2017. The second one is scheduled to take place this year. In addition to that, I run a small charity which I’m planning to expand in the future. I’m always open to new opportunities!”

The academy opened last April 2018 at the Pangyo Sports Center.

After a long season in the Turkish League with Eczacıbaşı VitrA, Kim is now back in South Korea to take some few weeks off. She is reportedly going to rejoin the national team in the 3rd week of the upcoming Volleyball Nations League.

Under a new foreign coach, Stefano Lavarini, we’re expecting to see a lot of new faces this season as Korea gears up for the Olympic Qualification Tourney in August.

Women’s Pools:
Pool A: Serbia, Puerto Rico, Thailand, Poland
Pool B: China, Turkey, Germany, Czech Republic
Pool C: USA, Argentina, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan
Pool D: Brazil, Dominican Republic, Cameroon, Azerbaijan
Pool E: Russia, Korea, Canada, Mexico
Pool F: Netherlands, Italy, Belgium, Kenya

The 31 year old Kim is very determined to lead South Korea to make it to the Olympics next year in Tokyo, Japan.

“I’ve accomplished many things at the club level. All the teams that I played for were at the top of the rankings and have won many cups. However, I’m not yet satisfied with results as a national team member. So my primary goal is to obtain the golden ticket to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and my ultimate goal is to acquire an Olympic medal there.”

Click here to view South Korea’s Preliminary Roster for the 2019 Volleyball Nations League.


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06 Jun

Two years after we first reported it, former Cuban player Yoandy Leal is OFFICIALLY part of the Brazilian team.

The 30 year old outside hitter appears on Brazil’s preliminary roster for the upcoming Volleyball Nations League which starts on May 31st. He will wear the #9 jersey which is the number is he has been wearing since he played for his former Brazilian club team Sada Cruzeiro and with his current club team Lube in Italy.

There’s no word yet when Leal will make his debut together with the reigning Olympic Champions but it’s finally happening.

Leal will be joined by a group of talented outside hitters who are also Olympic Champions like Douglas Souza, Ricardo Lucarelli and Mauricio Borges.

In case you didn’t know, Leal’s former teammate and one of the world’s best players, Wilfredo Leon, will be playing for Poland this year. He is allowed to play for reigning World Champions starting on July 24th so his Polish team debut will be at the Olympic Qualification Tournament in August.

Osmany Junatorena, another Cuban player who represented Italy at the 2016 Olympics, has called it a day and has no desire to play for the Italian squad.

Cuban middle blocker Robertlandy Simon was reportedly going to play for Bulgaria but the plan was axed by the Bulgarian Federation because of Simon’s age by the 2024 Olympics. He’d be 37 years old at the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Click here to check out the official website of the VNL.


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