Korean Air’s AVC Quarterfinals, Coach Tillikainen’s message ‘I hope you don’t become a frog in the well’

Incheon Korean Air, led by coach Tommy Tilikhainen (36), is also making a high-altitude march on the Asian stage. KOVO What does Korean Air’s off-season move, which has taken a different course from other clubs, mean?

Korean Air has been participating in this competition held in Manama, the capital of Bahrain, since the 14th. After the 2022-2023 season, it is time to take a break and recover from injuries for players who are not in good health. However, director Tillikainen had a different idea. He insisted on participating in the 2023 Asian Men’s Club Volleyball Championship (AVC) held in Bahrain, and Korean Air advanced to the quarterfinals.

At first, the Korean Air players who heard coach Tillikainen’s intentions tilted their heads. This is because if he gets injured due to an unreasonable schedule, bad news could come ahead of the next season.

Nonetheless, director Tillikainen’s will was stubborn. I was convinced by experience. Six years ago, in 2017, he made his debut through the Asian Men’s Club Volleyball Championship after taking charge of the Japanese league team Toyota Gosei (predecessor to Wolfdogs Nagoya). At that time, the team reached the final, but lost to Iranian volleyball team Sarmaye Banque Tehran and stayed in second place. Through this experience, director Tilly Kainen deepened his understanding of the Asian stage.

Coach Tillikainen, who took part in this tournament for the first time in six years, wanted to stimulate the players. He judged that he could become complacent after achieving the achievement of three consecutive combined championships. Head coach Tilly Kainen said he wanted to show the players the team and players playing volleyball at a higher level.

Director Tillikainen’s plan worked. The Korean Air players were inspired by meeting players who had commanded the world, such as Dmitri Mushalski (Russia) and Saeed Marouf (Iran), as well as players whose physique and strength exceeded the level of the V-League, both at the dorm and at the stadium.

The efforts of Asian top volleyball teams for this tournament also set an example for Korean Air players. Bahraini team Al Ahli offered Yosbani, who was active in the V-League, 10,000 dollars (13 million won) for two weeks to win the tournament. An additional $10,000 will be awarded as a winning bonus.

It is a blind spot that there is no prize money for winning the tournament, but the thoughts of coach Tillikainen and the club are that it is still worth participating in this tournament.

As the Asian Quarter Tryout system was created in the V-League, this tournament emerged as a stage to check Asian talent in advance. In this tournament, Korean Air also found outside hitter Farhan Halim, who was the king of serve in the Indonesian league. In the 3rd match of the group stage, Korean Air had difficulties with Farhan’s skills in air and defense, such as a strong serve. Locally, there was a prospect that Farhan would be the first candidate if he applied for the Asian Quarter Tryout.

Furthermore, this competition has its own meaning for Korean Air, which announced the birth of a new dynasty beyond the past Samsung Fire & Marine Dynasty. Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance, which dominated Korean volleyball in the 1990s and 2000s, won the championship in 2000 and 2001. In particular, in 2001, Shin Jin-sik was selected as the best player by winning the unsilenced set. Since Korean Air is trying to set an unprecedented record of 4 consecutive championships in Korean professional volleyball beyond Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance, it is very natural to aim for the top spot in Asia that Samsung Fire & Marine Insurance occupied.메이저놀이터

Coach Tillikainen’s plan to upgrade Korean Air does not end here. Coach Tilly Kainen is preparing in advance for a new impetus to give to his players ahead of the 2023-2024 season.

The national volleyball team is flying to Korea from Finland, the home country of coach Tillikainen. The Finnish national team will set up a base camp in Korea for the 2024 Paris Olympic qualifiers to be held in Japan from late September to early October. Finland plans to prepare for the Olympic qualifiers by holding a practice match against Korean Air.

The practice match against Finland is expected to be a great stimulus for Korean Air players. South Korea’s men’s volleyball world ranking is 34th. As a result, Korea is unable to participate in the Olympic qualifiers where the top 24 countries participate. The clash with the Finnish players can be an opportunity for Korean Air players to experience the world level. Furthermore, it seems that athletes will have a goal of experiencing the best stage of the Olympics.

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