The Helloworld Travel Australian women’s volleyball team, no strangers to challenges in recent years, face another major battle when the Asian Women’s Volleyball Championships begin in Manila on Wednesday.
The Volleyroos have somehow found themselves drawn in a three-team pool containing Olympic champions, China, and world number six, Japan, in the ultimate women’s volleyball “Group of Death”.
Coach Shannon Winzer, who has moulded the Australian squad into a competitive team capable of challenging the world’s best, is looking at the positives.
“We are in a very tough pool with just China and Japan, but not every team gets a chance to play against the number one and number six teams in the World and really see how they measure up,” she said from Manila this week.
“The majority of the squad has been together since before World Grand Prix and we have quite a few international games under our belt so far this season, with that definitely comes a certain level of confidence.”
The Volleyroos go into the Asian Championships without star players Rachel Rourke and Karley Hynes, who are both unavailable, and have added Elissa Blowes from the Centre of Excellence, and Katrina Janssen, who plays in the NCAA and was a member of the Australian U23 squad earlier this year.
The Helloworld Travel Volleyroos take on Japan on Wednesday.