The Russian women’s National Sitting Volleyball Team held a series of friendly matches with the national teams of the United States and Brazil.
The games were held from March 7 to 9.
Head coach of the Russian National Sitting Volleyball Team Aleksander Ovsiannikov summed up the results of the meeting in an interview with the Press service of the Russian Paralympic Committee.
“In the USA, we went to play with the strongest teams in the world - the national team of the USA and Brazil.
The US team is the current champions of the Paralympic Games Brazil is the bronze medalist of the 2016 Paralympics.
Over the course of 3 days, we played two matches - we beat the Brazilian team 3 times, lost twice and defeated the US team. Our goal was not to win at all costs. We needed to understand where we were losing and what we were being beaten with.
From this point of view, this is a very useful trip, because we played only with the strongest opponents, not being distracted by other teams.
The matches were intense and interesting. The United States played different compositions, the basis was the same, but the young athletes were substituted, the national teams of Russia and Brazil played the main compositions.
We met with these teams at the 2018 World Cup. In the quarter finals, we beat the Brazilian national team, and in the final of the competition - the US national team. These were one of our most difficult games, and the victory in the final was spectacular.
But for all that, now the US team, in my opinion, is the strongest team on the planet. We can win against them, but 1 game out of 5. Which is confirmed by the results of the meetings after the World Cup - 2 defeats at the traditional tournament of the strongest teams of the planet World Super 6, which took place in November 2019 in Japan, as well as the results of friendly matches in the USA.
In general, friendly matches in the USA is a very important competitive and training experience. For a long time, we met with our key and principled rivals, saw their game, analyzed and recorded match meetings.
The second point, we have developed our own schemes, which will be further developed, and also determined in which direction and volume we need to continue working in order to be competitive with the US team.
Unfortunately, friendly matches were, most likely, the final games with foreign teams before the XVI Paralympic Games in Tokyo, and it is precisely after these matches that we will adjust our further preparations”.