Karch Kiraly: "We play with energy"


Karch Kiraly once again commented on the tough pool USA is competing in Rio 2016

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 6, 2016 – U.S. Coach Karch Kiraly is used to the volleyball atmosphere that reigns in Brazil, a country he has been visiting since 1977, and said their fans bring a lot of energy something good for a team like his who likes to play with energy.

Karch Kiraly, Coach of United States: I am happy for my players as they are the ones doing the work but I am also happy for getting this first victory in a very tough pool. We already watched Netherlands and China and we have also Serbia and Italy in our pool. We know Puerto Rico very well since we are from the same NORCECA zone and we played them last January in our qualification tournament. I expected them to play better and I also expect us to play better.

On the Brazilian atmosphere:
I have been coming to Brazil since 1977 and the fans really love volleyball and have a lot of knowledge about the game. I don’t expect them to cheer for us, but they bring a lot of energy for us also. And we like to play with energy.

Christa Harmotto-Dietzen, Captain of United States: Congratulations to Puerto Rico for a great match. They played good defence. We always try to learn from every match and to work on improving our game. Now we have to prepare for our next match.

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Juan Carlos Nunez, Coach of Puerto Rico: We had good moments but tactically they pressed us with their serves and our reception, which is one of our qualities, failed in some key moments. They dominated us with their fast game and now we have to prepare for our next match against Serbia which is also a very strong team.

Yarimar Rosa, Captain of Puerto Rico: Our first match was a tough one against one of the favourites to win the gold medal. I am glad to put this game behind us and the nerves of taking part in our first Olympic Games. We are very proud of representing our country and today we were a little bit excited. Hopefully we can play better in our next matches.

Karsta Lowe (USA)

On their first match victory in Rio 2016 Olympic Games:

“It feels good. We are excited for this tournament and to have just this one win means a lot and we’re ready for a lot more.”

On her goal for Rio 2016:

“My personal goal is to be really present at the games and have fun. Whatever role I am in, I have to be as good as I can for the team.”

On improving her defence:

“I think that in the past I’ve always relied on offence, but for the last couple of years I’ve made a lot of improvement on defence especially in blocking, passing and digging. I’ve definitely made a huge stride in blocking.”

Foluke Akinradewo (USA)

On their first match victory in Rio 2016 Olympic Games:

“It was nice to have the first match and get all the nerves and jitters out. Things weren’t easy and a lot were to be expected, and we’ve kind of embraced that and loved that about the game. We did better in all areas of the game, so I am happy that this is our start, but we definitely have a lot to work on.”

On whether they focus on their offence or defence:

“We are focusing on our whole game. I can say that are working a lot on defence. We’re also focusing really hard on our offence and our transition game.”
On the fun things she has done in Rio:

“We’ve been really focused on volleyball and it’s been pretty hectic this first week. The most fun thing was to participate in the Opening Ceremony last night. It was surreal. Going to the Games is a once in a lifetime opportunity and the fact that I got to do it twice is such an honour. To be among the best of the best is really humbling.”


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