Nakhon Pathom, Thailand, September 21, 2016 – All is set for the “SMM” 5th AVC Cup for Men at the Nakhon Pathom Gymnasium here from September 22 to 28, with top eight teams in Asia including world No.7 Iran and title-holders Korea strutting their stuff to vie for the top honour.
Only teams finishing top eight from the last year’s Asian Senior Men’s Championship in Tehran, Iran are eligible for the 5th episode, splitting into two pools of four teams apiece. Hosts Thailand, Chinese Taipei, China and Kazakhstan are in Pool A, while Pool B features Ian, Australia, Asian champions Japan and Korea. Actually, Kazakhstan finished ninth at the Asian meet, but received the green light to contest the AVC Cup in Nakhon Pathom in place of Qatar, the fourth place at the Asian Championship but pulled out of the biennial top-flight competition.
The pool round-robin preliminaries of the one-week tournament will be held from September 22 to 24, with current world No.7 Iran, the only Asian side to challenge the world’s elite teams at the last month’s Rio Olympic Games, opening their first clash against Australia at 11.30am local time, followed by the match between Japan and Korea. Thailand, powered by hard-attacking Jirayu Raksakaew, will take on Chinese Taipei, with China challenging Kazakhstan.
The Control Committee, chaired by Mr Yim Hyung Bin, had already inspected the competition venue which was found ready for use. Facilities and infrastructure for all participating teams had also been properly checked, putting the right thing in the right place. Security is also tight as the competition gets set to begin Thursday morning.
The General Technical Meeting took place on Wednesday at the Chedi Room, Mida Dhavaravati Grande Hotel in Nakhon Pathom here. CC President Mr Yim Hyung Bin and Mr Somporn Chaibangyang, President of the Thailand Volleyball Association, jointly chaired the meeting, with head coaches from all eight participating teams taking part.
“Everything is ready for the start of the competition. The 5th AVC Cup for Men in Nakhon Pathom will serve as the last major AVC competition of the year. I hope that the tournament will be a a success,” Mr Yim said during the Wednesday’s meeting
Mr Somporn also confirmed the host country’s readiness for the event, saying that the organising committee members hope that all participating teams will stay in Thailand as their second home and promise to do their best in hosting the tournament successfully.
POOL A: 1. Thailand; 2. China; 3. Kazakhstan; 4. Chinese Taipei
POOL B: 1. Japan; 2. Iran; 3. Australia; 4. Korea
MATCH SCHEDULE (all local times)
Thursday, September 22
11.30am: Iran v Australia
2pm: Japan v Korea
4.30pm: Thailand v Chinese Taipei
7pm: China v Kazakhstan
Friday, September 23
11.30am: Korea v Australia
2pm: Japan v Iran
4.30pm: Thailand v China
7pm: Chinese Taipei v Kazakhstan
Saturday, September 24
11.30am: Iran v Korea
2pm: Australia v Japan
4.30pm: Thailand v Kazakhstan
7pm: China v Chinese Taipei
Sunday, September 25