The Morales task, find the Afogit Spiker

Since the 20th, the 2024 Volleyball Nations League quarter-final tournament has been held in Bangkok, Thailand. However, South Korea, which recorded 2-10 losses in 12 qualifying matches and ranked 15th out of 16 participating countries, ended its VNL schedule with the last game of Week 3 against the Netherlands on the 16th. After the VNL schedule ends on the 23rd, the 12 countries that won Olympic tickets will prepare for the Paris Olympics, which will open on July 26, but unfortunately, South Korea did not get a ticket to the Olympic finals.

In fact, Morales’ goal before participating in this VNL competition was to escape back-to-back losses. Korean women’s volleyball, where Cesar Hernandez González (Nant Neptune) took charge after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, lost all games for two consecutive years in the 2022 and 2023 VNL competitions. However, Korean women’s volleyball, which reorganized its team after Fernando Morales’ appointment in March, achieved the desired result by beating Thailand and France in this year’s VNL competition.

In this year’s championship, Korea’s offense was led by a combination of Jung Ji-yoon (Hyundai Construction Hillstate) who ranked 18th (129 points) and Kang So-hwi (Korea Expressway Corporation High Pass), who ranked 20th (124 points). In contrast, the team’s performance was relatively disappointing. In order for the Morales to balance the right and left attacks, it is necessary to find and nurture young Apogit Spikers who will lead the future of Korean women’s volleyball.

Of course, there are Apogit Spikers dedicated to receiving like Moon Jung-won of the Korea Expressway Corporation, but in most teams, Libero and outside heaters are responsible for receiving, and Apogit Spikers are often in charge of the attack. In the V-League, most clubs also selected Apogit Spikers in the foreign player draft and took charge of the attack. In fact, six foreign players were exempted from receiving and responsible for the attack in the 2023-2024 season, except for Giovanna Milana of the Jung-gwan Red Sparks.

In Korean women’s volleyball, there is an outstanding left-hander named “living legend” Hwang Yeon-ju (Hyundai Engineering & Construction) who scored a total of 6,355 points from the first year of the V-League to the 2023-2024 season. However, Hwang Yeon-ju, who conquered the V-League, also failed to perform as well as expected in international competitions due to his small stature (177 centimeters) and chronic knee injury. Therefore, from the 2012 London Olympics to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Kim Hee-jin (IBK Industrial Bank Altos) played as the undisputed Apogit spiker of the national team.

As the absolute ace of the Korean women’s volleyball team, Kim Yeon-koung (Hwangkuk Life Pink Spiders), led the team in offense and defense, Kim Hee-jin was mostly an option for the team to assist Kim. Of course, Kim also had a lot of injuries including knees and shoulders during her career. However, Kim fought hard as a middle blocker in her team and an apogit spiker in the national team, contributing significantly to the semifinals at two Olympics and the gold medal at the 2014 Incheon Asian Games.

However, after the Tokyo Olympics, Kim was no longer included in the national team due to injury. Cesar, who was leading the national team at the time, selected Kim Dae-eun (Hungkuk Life Insurance), a rookie who failed to secure a starting position in the V-League, and used her as an apogee spiker at last year’s VNL competition. Many volleyball fans expressed concern over Kim Dae-eun’s participation as the starting member, which was not widely known, but the fact that Kim Dae-eun was not known was the same to other countries as well.

Kim Dae-eun, who played as the national team’s apogee spiker in last year’s VNL competition, showed a “surprise performance” in which she scored 83 points in eight matches. Although the national team had lost all 12 games for the second consecutive year, the discovery of the apogee spiker Kim Dae-eun was the best achievement from the pain of losing all games. However, while struggling with a shoulder injury in the 2023-2024 season, Kim Dae-eun scored only two points in seven V-League matches.

Even after the 2023-2024 season was over and Morales was appointed, the Korean women’s volleyball team continued to worry about the Apogit Spiker. To make matters worse, Korea left the national team due to Kim Dae-eun’s injury and left for Brazil, where the first week will be held, with Moon Ji-yoon, who played as a middle blocker for GS Caltex KIXX in the 2023-2024 season. And in the first week, Morales hired captain Park Jung-ah (Pepers of Pepper Savings Bank), who plays as an outside heater for his team, as an Apogit Spiker.

Park seemed to adjust to the position of the apogee spiker without difficulty, scoring 16 points in the match against Thailand, where Korea had escaped from the VNL team’s 30th consecutive loss. 토토사이트 순위 Park, who has played in the V-League for more than 10 years, has found it increasingly difficult to play the role of an apogee spiker. Eventually, Morales began to give Moon Ji-yoon, who was selected as the only professional apogee spiker of the national team, a chance from the second half of the second week.

Mun Ji-yoon, who showed promise by scoring seven points in his first match against Japan in Week 3, contributed to Korea’s 3-2 victory against France. Later, Mun Ji-yoon, who had 10 points against Italy and six against the Netherlands, scored 51 points in the tournament, serving as the Morales team’s joker. That Mun Ji-yoon, like Kim Dae-eun last year, is also a newcomer to the international stage has made his opponents stay alert.

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