Tokyo, Japan, April 20, 2015 - Japan head coach Masashi Nambu, who is in his second season with the team, has named Yuta Abe captain ahead of the 2015 edition of the FIVB Volleyball World League. He has also called on his players to show determination in the 16 month build-up to the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.
Speaking at a press conference in Tokyo, Nambu said: "We only have 16 months before the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. This season, we have to be brave to challenge. Also, we will be sure to do our best at the Asian Championship and at the FIVB Volleyball World Cup 2015."
Nambu has named Yuta Abe new team captain. Abe, who participated in the FIVB Volleyball World Championships in 2002, 2006 and 2010 and in the World Cups in 2003 and 2011, said: "Explaining something in words is not my style. I will lead my team-mates by my performance on the court. I do not know exactly how a captain should be. But I would like to be able to provide advice to younger players."
Also speaking at the press conference, Japan Volleyball Association (JVA) President Yuichiro Hamu added: "Last year’s success at the Asian Games in Korea was just the prologue. Head coach Nambu has called on some young and tall players from universities. They might have little international experience, but the coaching team will do all it can to prepare them well for this year's events."
Japan will now train in different parts of Japan. They begin their World League campaign on May 30, when they take on the Czech Republic, and will also play Korea and France in Pool D. After the World League, Nambu's team will participate in a training camp in Iran before playing in the Asian Championship hosted by the same country. In August and September, Japan will host the FIVB Volleyball World Cup, with twelve teams participating in the men's event from September 8-23.