Tokyo, Japan, May 9, 2016 – The Japan women’s national team now get ready for their strong challenge for the FIVB World Olympic Qualification Tournament, which will be held from May 14 to 22 at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium.
Head Coach Masayoshi Manabe said, “All seven matches in the World Olympic Qualification Tournament should be tough. Last time in 2012 for the London Olympics, we had many difficulties to pass the tournament. Now we all promise to tightly unite as one and do our best in every match.”
Captain Saori Kimura led her team-mates for the team’s preparation, “For the fourth Olympic experience, I personally have different feeling compared with the previous editions. However, my performance won’t be changed. What I have to do now is to encourage myself and team-mates to have high motivation”. If Japan qualify for the Rio Games 2016, Kimura will achieve four consecutive Olympic Games appearances since her debut episode in Athens in 2004. And this will be her first time to participate in the Olympic Games as captain.
Japan’s young star Sarina Koga said, “I want to encourage the earthquake victims in my home town”. Koga grew up in Kumamoto, where a large number of people have been suffering from great earthquakes. Koga believes her best performance in this tournament will boost morale for her family, her friends and people in the quake stricken areas.
Japan are due to take on Peru on their opening match on May 14. In the 2016 FIVB World Olympic Qualification Tournament in Japan, the top-ranked Asian team plus the top three teams will qualify for the Olympics.