Volleyball New Zealand confirmed on Tuesday the Junior Men’s and Women’s indoor squads for the coming international cycle.
Junior Men’s coach Ben Laing says the selection process was tough with the talent level really high across the board.
“When it came to selecting the Junior national side I have never had a job so hard,” Laing said.
“This speaks hugely to the depth of quality we have at our disposal in Aotearoa, not only of our athletes as volleyball players but as tremendous young humans.”
Laing said another element was the recent collaboration with Senior Volley Blacks and Volley Ferns coach Sebastian Gonzalez and VNZ Coach Development Manager Shaun Matthews in discussing the philosophies and strategies underpinning the national team set-ups.
“This allows us to lay a solid foundation of understanding within our junior program with the sincere hope of building towards further national representation as they progress through their volleyball journeys.”
Junior Women's Assistant Coach Adam Watson can't wait for the July contact with the squad.
"We’re really excited for the upcoming camp to work with the 36 athletes," Watson said.
"It’s a real insight for us knowing that many associations schools and clubs around the country are investing in the growth and development of our junior athlete space.
I know we have a few athletes who have been involved in the Volley Ferns over the past couple of months at their camps in prep for the tour to Chile so that’s really exciting to have players who have been in and around Seb [Volley Ferns coach Sebastian Gonzalez] and have already been training and competing at the step above."
Both squads will assemble in Auckland in early July for a programme of training and games with an eye on international events next year.
Click here for the full squads for both Men’s and Women’s Indoor Junior Teams.