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World champions China lead 12-nation cast in Asian Women’s U23 Championship

 
Manila, Philippines, April 30, 2015 – Reigning FIVB women’s U23 world champions China will spearhead the 12-team cast in the first ever edition of the Asian Women’s U23 Volleyball Championship that will be held from May 1 to 9 at the PSC Philsports Arena in the Philippine capital.

It is the second time that the Philippines have hosted a major Asian volleyball event in two years after they organised the 2014 Asian Men’s Clubs Volleyball Championship. 

 
China won
their world title in Tijuana, Mexico in 2013
and will look to wing-spiker Liu
Yahan, who was part of the World Championship team, for inspiration when they
take on India and Macau in Pool B. 

“I am very excited to be here in the U23 tournament,” China coach Xu Jiande said. “I hope that my team will be the best in this tournament.”

“China are top favourites,” India coach Vaishali Phadtare said. “Japan, Korea and Thailand are also top contenders.”

Meanwhile, hosts Philippines are in Pool A with Kazakhstan and Iran and aiming to impress their home fans.  

“Playing at home will help my team a lot,” Philippines coach Roger Gorayeb said. “The best thing we can do is to prepare well for our matches.”

“I am very honoured to wear the national colours,” captain Alyssa Valdez added. “We are not expecting anything but we are going to do our best in this tournament.”

Asian Women’s U19 runners-up Japan are grouped with Chinese Taipei and Maldives in Pool C; while Korea, Thailand and Uzbekistan are in Pool D.

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