South Korea women’s national volleyball team captain Park Jung-ah (30-Pepper Savings Bank) has vowed to bounce back from a humiliating second straight loss at the FIVB Volleyball Nations League (VNL).
Head coach Cesar Hernandez’s side suffered a disastrous 12-match defeat at the 2023 VNL in June. Dating back to 2021, the team has fallen into a 27-game losing streak in the VNL, and last year was the second straight year they were swept.
This time around, it must be different. The national team will compete in the 2023 Asian Women’s Volleyball Championship in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, from May 30 to June 6. The team has been sweating it out at the Jincheon Athletes’ Village in Chungcheongbuk-do for the past six days.
“In the VNL, I felt difficult because of my height and physicality,” Park said. “If you can’t win with height, you have to be good at something else. I need to be more accurate in my defense and reception, and show improvement in my serve.”
Park took over the armband after her predecessor, “Volleyball Empress” Kim Yeon-kyung (Heungkuk Life), announced her retirement from the national team after the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. It’s been two years since she took over.
“I think I tend to listen to the players’ opinions a lot,” Park said, “I have a lot of younger friends, so I try to talk to them a lot.” “I still feel burdened and heavy being the captain, but the players are helping me a lot, so I try to do my best,” she added.
Kim accompanied the team at the VNL as an advisor, not a player. The presence of Kim made the armband feel less weighty for Park. “(Kim) always helped us a lot,” Park said, adding that she was grateful for the advice she received, “from the characteristics of foreign players to the way they approach their matches.”
After the VNL, there were changes to the roster. Kim Yeon-yeon (Hyundai E&C), Lee Sun-woo (KGC Ginseng Corporation), Kwon Min-ji (GS Caltex), and Lee Han-bi (Pepper Savings Bank) joined the team.
As the captain, she has to help the new players adjust. “Some of them were on the national team last year, and some of them are new,” Park explained, “so I talk to them first and tell them what to do in the game, sign their names, and so on.” 먹튀검증
As for the team’s current level of perfection, they still have a lot to work on. “We didn’t have enough time to train after the KOVO Cup. “We’re still trying to get our bearings,” Park said, “and we’re training a lot so that we can be as perfect as possible before the tournament.
After the Asian Championships, the team will compete at the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games, a bigger international event. However, Park said, “In our team meeting, we talked about focusing on the Asian Championships and moving forward,” adding, “We’re not talking about the Asian Games because it’s still a long way off. We are talking a lot about competing in the immediate competitions one by one.”
Park has fond memories of the Asian Games