SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador, July 3, 2023.- The Head Coaches of the eight women volleyball teams spoke ahead of the 24th edition of the Central American and Caribbean Games of San Salvador 2023 that starts on Tuesday July 4 at the Sports Palace Carlos El Famoso Hernández.
Italian coaches Nicola Negro and Andrea Genova will have their first experience not only at the CAC Games but their first official event coaching the national teams of Mexico and El Salvador respectively.
Antonio Rizola, Head Coach of Colombia: “We are coming with the same motivation that we had in Barranquilla, where nobody was expecting Colombia to reach the final. But we are here in a different group, with Cuba, Trinidad & Tobago, and the host country, where every match is important, I always worry, but that motivates me. My team must not be confident that because they reached the finals four years ago, they will do the same here, we are working hard to be there”.
Pablo Acuña, Head Coach of Costa Rica: “We are coming after a good performance at the Final Four, we understand these are different teams, but it was good preparation for the team and to be more confident, as well as understand what we need tactically to take a bigger step. We are in a tough group, and we must compete with a lot of focus and discipline, the team is ready for that. More than results we want to have an optimal performance according to our statistics and our process”.
Tomás Fernández Arteaga, Head Coach of Cuba: “The teams’ preparation has been acceptable. Our sole goal is to obtain a respectable position, which includes a medal. We are well prepared, but the results will come from the court”.
Wagner Pacheco, Assistant Coach of Dominican Republic: “The team is coming from competing at the VNL, with one change of a middle player. The team is coming strong after a very demanding competition, with two important victories to close the VNL, which I believe makes us the team with the highest level of play here. But we are aware that the players are tired from a whole month of competition, the changes in time zone and the long travel which we must manage”.
Andrea Genova, Head Coach of El Salvador: “We have been working for four months together, I came in February. For many players this will be their first experience and for me the first official match. We are here to gain experience as a team, to try to surprise and let’s see what comes out”.
Nicola Negro, Head Coach of Mexico: “I am really excited to be in the Norceca world, it’s an honor. I am enthusiastic and I am just starting with the Mexican national team to bring my experience to help the team grow. Like every beginning, it takes time. The Central American Games will be the first of many competitions for 2023, we are confident to do a good job”.
Saleem Ali, Head Coach of Trinidad & Tobago: “We have four players with experience and eight with not much experience; our two setters are young. This is all new for the team. We are fairly prepared, and our main goal is the Caribbean Cup that is in less than a month, so we are here to get the experience to use it at that level”.
Fernando Morales, Head Coach of Puerto Rico: “This is a young talented team, with the addition of Brittnay Abercrombie and Neira Ortiz, providing more experience to the group. We are aware that we play our all in every match, and we are starting with a tough opponent (Mexico), but our players have been in difficult situations, such as our Professional League and we know they will put up with the pressure”.