HERMOSILLO, Sonora, Mexico, August 20, 2022.- The Women’s Pan American Cup is a qualification event for the Pan American Games and the Central American & Caribbean Games to be held in 2023 in Santiago and El Salvador respectively.
Excluding Dominican Republic and Mexico, who are already qualified for both multisport events, the highest-ranking team of NORCECA will qualify to the Santiago Pan American Games, while three vacancies will go to the highest-ranking teams among NORCECA and Colombia, for the El Salvador Central American & Caribbean Games.
Coaches of the participating teams gave their first impressions ahead of the event.
Carolyn O’Dwyer, Head Coach of Canada: “We’ve had a long training block, with a large group of this team, so we feel really ready for the competition and excited to play against some top teams.
For a lot of our athletes this will be their first international event and I am excited to see how they perform”.
Eduardo Niño, Second Coach of Colombia: “Our main goal is to qualify for the Central American and Caribbean Games. We have been preparing for over two months with professor Rizola in charge, also thinking about the World Championship, our most important competition this year. The team has been working hard and keeping active for all the Olympic cycle competitions”.
Pablo Acuña, Head Coach of Costa Rica: “The foundation of the team is the one from the Final Four, but we have other players which we want to observe. The team is excited and with desire to compete, we are in a hard group, but each match will be an experience for players and staff. It’s a great opportunity to plan ahead and be prepared for the Central American & Caribbean Games, which I have no doubt that Costa Rica can be there”.
Thomas Fernández Arteaga, Head Coach of Cuba: “This is a major competition for us because it’s a qualification event and our goal is to obtain that qualification; also, to finish in the best position possible to win the most ranking points possible and that will help us qualify later on. The team is going through a psychological hit because our setter couldn’t come (Greta Moreno) because of Covid, hoping she will come further in the competition. We are optimistic that Greta will recover”.
Marcos Kwiek, Head Coach of Dominican Republic: “We brought some young players, some just made it to the senior team, it’s a good mix with our veteran players. Physically the team is not in good condition. We are aware of the importance of the Pan American Cup; it will be strong, and we hope to fight in the finals”.
Rafael Petry, Head Coach of Mexico: “The team is ready to compete, prepared for this strong competition, with opponents of great ambitions. We have new members of the team, to be part of the process of National teams and evaluate them”.
René Quintana, Head Coach of Nicaragua: “The team is here to take advantage of the competition, it is part of our preparation for the Central American Games coming soon in Guatemala. We acknowledge that the game level is above ours, but we will try that our opponents will work hard against us”.
Francisco Hervas, Head Coach of Peru: “Peru wants to make the most of this competition, it’s an interesting tournament with the opportunity to face teams that we usually don’t face. The team consists of experienced players and others that are moving up, it’s a balance to help us rebuild our team”.
Héctor Soto, Head Coach of Puerto Rico: “We usually have difficulties preparing our team when competitions take place in the summer because our professional league runs in this period, but at least the girls are in good physical condition, they have a good game level. We will try to determine our game style during the competition; basically, we are prepared”.
Bradley Rostratter, Head Coach of United States: “We had a great training block, three weeks to train alongside with the world championship training group and the preparation has gone really well for us. Some players have international experience, maybe 50% have played one or two international seasons, some even played VNL, we have a group of talented players”.