Three zones integrated as qualifiers set to spike off
WILLEMSTAD, Curacao, May 10, 2013 - Just over five months after
hosting the eighth and final first round series, Group A of the
NORCECA FIVB Men’s World Championship qualifiers, Curacao will
play host to the first of six second round Women’s World
Championship four-team qualifiers, Group J on May 11-12 at the
International School of Curacao Auditorium, Willemstad.
In addition to the host country Curacao, St Lucia, Antigua and
Barbuda, as well as Belize are the other countries who will be
involved in the two days of what is expected to be very
competitive and entertaining competition.
Over the two days, the four teams will first contest a
round-robin series to be concluded on Sunday morning after which
the top two will battle it out for the gold medal, having both
already qualified for the third round of qualification as
The third placed team will also have a chance of qualifying to
the third round, but will do so as the top third place finisher.
Speaking prior to the holding of the Preliminary Meeting of the
participating teams, Mushtaque Mohammed, head of the Control
Committee and president of the Caribbean Zonal Volleyball
Association (CAZOVA) was quick to point out that this will be
the first tournament for the women in the second round and
NORCECA was more excited to see how it evolves with the
integration of all the three different zones, CAZOVA, ECVA and
the Central American Volleyball Association (AFECAVOL).
Mohammed added, “We can’t predict the outcome of this group
because this is the first time these teams will be meeting each
other, and this is all part of NORCECA’s Developmental plan.
"To have all the zones integrated during the World Championship
qualifiers is giving us that opportunity which the participating
countries are all happy about, no matter the outcome of their
Eric Ogenia, president of the Curacao Volleyball Federation was
quick to state his federation was extremely happy to be given
the opportunity to host yet another round of qualifiers even
during its current lack of finances.
Ogenia explained, “For us in Curacao it is much easier for us as
the host country whereby we will have some financial assistance
from NORCECA, while if we were to travel to another country to
compete at this moment it would have been a serious challenge on
us to get the funding to do as we don’t have the support of
Government in that way".
“In addition, our men’s team is due to travel next week for its
second round of qualifiers and for us to try and send two teams
away at the same time would have been another burden on our
“However, Aruba will be hosting the men’s qualifiers and it will
not cost as much to get our team there so we are happy for that
“That said, we are expected a very well run tournament as we had
with the men last December as we will be using the same venue
which is tournament ready”, added Ogenia.
With regards to his own national team Ogenia was adamant that
his women’s team must go after the gold medal.
“Once the women play to their true potential I see no reason why
our women can’t qualify from the group as the winner.”
Ogenia said his team will be banking on the play of three key
players in USA-based Christine Anthony, Netherlands-based Neysa
Hoi and middle-blocker Lianne Van Beek.
Anthony plies her trade with the University of North Carolina
and is coming off an impressive season after being named ‘Most
Valuable Player” of their first round qualifying series in St
Croix last year while Hoi was also part of the team and played a
pivotal role in their qualification to the second round.
Van Beek, on the other hand was not part of the team in the
previous round and her inclusion is expected to boost her team’s