KAZAKHSTAN’S ALTAY SIGN SHORT-TERM DEAL FOR CLUB WORLDS WITH DE LA CRUZ

KAZAKHSTAN’S ALTAY SIGN SHORT-TERM DEAL FOR CLUB WORLDS WITH DE LA CRUZ

The Dominican star will strengthen the team from Kazakhstan in Ankara

De La Cruz is fresh from her second Olympic appearance in Tokyo

Set to make their second appearance in the competition at the FIVB Volleyball Women’s Club World Championship from December 15-19 in Ankara, Turkey, Kazakhstan’s Altay Club have added a fair amount of experience and power to their squad ahead of the tournament with the signing of Dominican star Bethania De La Cruz.

One of the most powerful offensive players in international volleyball, the 34-year-old De La Cruz has agreed on a short-team deal with the reigning Asian champions for next month’s tournament.

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A two-time Olympian, De La Cruz has been a staple for the Dominican Republic national team since 2005. The 1.83m-tall outside hitter led her country to an eighth-place finish at the Tokyo Olympics and to their best-ever result at the FIVB Volleyball Nations League, finishing sixth, earlier this year.

De La Cruz has played in a Club World Championship once before, in 2010, when she helped the Dominican Republic’s Mirador finish fourth. She has also played professionally in Puerto Rico, Japan, Korea, Turkey, Russia, Italy, Indonesia and the United States.

“A new opportunity of doing what I love and enjoy,” she wrote in an Instagram post. “See you soon, Club World Championship.”

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The Dominican star will be one of three international players in the Kazakh team’s roster. Altay also have Serbian setter Danica Radenkovic and Ukrainian outside hitter Nadiia Kodola.

Altay will be joined by five other clubs at this year’s Women’s Club World Championship including VakifBank Istanbul and Fenerbahce Opet Istanbul of Turkey, Brazil’s Dentil Praia Clube and Itambe Minas and Italy’s Prosecco Doc Imoco Volley Conegliano, who are the defending champions.

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