Bengaluru, Dec 5 (IANS): Bengaluru is all-set to host the Men's Volleyball Club World Championships 2023. This is the first time in the history of Indian volleyball, that an event of this repute featuring some of the global stars of the game is being held in the country.
Ahead of the five-day volleyball extravaganza that begins on Wednesday at the Koramangala Indoor Stadium, representatives of all six teams and key organizers addressed a press conference here on Tuesday.
Adding to this milestone moment for Indian volleyball is the participation of Prime Volleyball League Season 2 reigning champions Ahmedabad Defenders, with the Indian stars getting an opportunity to showcase their skills against the best of the world, as they vie for the coveted trophy.
Srajan Shetty, the Karnataka lad who will feature in the Ahmedabad Defenders campaign spoke on the importance of the Men's Volleyball Club World Championships, "It is an immense privilege and matter of pride for us to participate in the Men's Volleyball Club World Championships on home soil. This tournament not only provides us with a golden opportunity play with the best players in the world but also to showcase the true potential of Indian Volleyball."
Apart from the Ahmedabad Defenders, the marquee competition that will be aired on Sony Sports Network, will feature reigning champions Sir Safety Susa Perugia from Italy, the formidable Brazilian club of Sada Cruzeiro Volei, who are four-time winners of the tournament, Minas Tênis Clube (Ittambe Minas) making their third appearance in the competition, following a fourth-place finish last year. Also debuting this year will be Japan's Suntory Sunbirds Club, and Turkey's Halkbank Spor Kulubu.
Sharing his thoughts on his team’s prospects in the tournament, Wilfredo Leon, captain of Sir Safety Susa Perugia, remarked, “We come here with a lot of expectations and a positive energy to retain the title. I have played this tournament many times and to win it again would be huge for our team, especially to win it in India. There are so many big stars at this tournament, and it is a great way to show volleyball is growing not just in Europe and USA but in India as well. I hope this is something future generation can aspire towards.”
FIVB, Second Executive VP and CEV President, Aleksandar Boricic expressed his delight in bringing the tournament to India, “We are extremely happy to be in India for this tournament. Despite India being such a big country, it has not enough exposure at the highest level of volleyball. I would like to take this opportunity to ask everybody to support this game and its growth in India.”
The tournament will commence on the December 6 at the Koramangala Indoor Stadium in Bengaluru. Ahmedabad Defenders will find themselves in Pool A, facing the defending champions, Sir Sicoma Perugia from Italy, and Brazil’s Minas Tênis Clube (Itambé Minas). In Pool B, Halkbank Spor Kulübü from Turkey, Sada Cruzeiro Volei from Brazil, and Japan’s Suntory Sunbirds are grouped.