VOLLEYBALL NATIONS LEAGUE – ROUND 2 PREVIEW
The Australian Men’s Volleyroos will be looking to mark their first win at the 2022 Volleyball Nations League (VNL) when Round 2 gets underway at on 22 June.
After a gallant effort in the opening round, which included a close loss to reigning Asian Champions Iran – going down 3-1, Australia has reset ahead of their matchups against Canada, Poland, Serbia and host nation Bulgaria.
Opening their Round 2 match against fellow challenger team, Canada, middle blocker Trent O’Dea believes it will be an important opportunity for Australia to get their first win.
“Canada is always an exciting team to play against. I feel that we have a good relationship with the Canadian guys,” O’Dea said.
“It is a very important game for us to win so the game will certainly be a high priority coming into this round,” he said.
Australia will also have their chance to notch up a win against old foes Bulgaria. The Aussies got the better of the former European Games silver medallist during the inaugural season of the tournament in 2018, coming away with a close-fought 3-0 (25-23, 25-23, 26-24) win.
Bulgaria then got their revenge in 2019 during a five-set thriller, which saw them take a 3-2 (20-25, 29-27, 22-25,25-21,15-13) victory but this time Australia is hoping fortune will be on their side.
“Bulgaria they’re a tough team but we’re definitely up for the challenge and they have some strong players as well. We can expect a lot from them,” said Lorzeno Pope.
With 2021 VNL runners-up Poland and three-time European Champions Serbia also on the cards for the Aussie Men’s Volleyroos, Arash Dosanjh expects it to be a tough match against the world number two side.
“Poland is a powerhouse in the volleyball world so we’re expecting a lot of hard-hitting, good execution and a tough game,” Dosanjh said.
“I think Serbia is going to be pretty similar to how it has been the last few years. They don’t have a huge depth in their roaster so they’ll bring out their best guys.
“Our team’s goal is to lock in some good connections and play some good volleyball,” he said.
For the full schedule of the FIVB Men’s Volleyball Nations League – click here
The Volleyball Nations League will be live streamed via Volleyball World TV – click here for more
MEN’S VOLLEYROOS SCHEDULE
ROUND 2 – Sofia, Bulgaria
22 June – Australia v Canada
25 June – Australia v Bulgaria
25 June – Australia v Poland
26 June – Australia v Serbia
ROUND 3 – Osaka, Japan
6 July – Australia v Japan
7 July – Australia v Germany
8 July – Australia v Argentina
10 July – Australia v France