Uralochka is currently ranked third in the group with two points, having scored an away win in Cannes (3:2) and suffered a home defeat to Vakifbank ISTANBUL (1:3).
This will be a very special match especially since the legendary head coach of Uralochka – he has been at the helm of the club for 35 years – Nikolay Karpol has been a special advisor of Volero for quite a long time. Karpol is a true Volleyball legend, having coached also the Soviet and Russian national teams for 20 years and medaled five times at the Olympics, not to count his unique collection from European and World Championships.
Back in 2002 Karpol visited Zurich and the club of Volero, at that time competing in the Swiss second division, spending one week there to share his great knowledge of the sport. Only six months later, via the transfer of two top players and the establishment of an ad-hoc company, the special adventure of Volero got started but Karpol remained at the side of the Swiss club as member of Volero’s Advisory Board.
Volero club President Stav Jacobi is definitely looking forward to welcoming Karpol back. “We will finally cross our ways again with one of the world’s most successful coaches. We have been discussing this opportunity with him for the past ten years. Back in 2003 he really helped us as we started our adventure as professional club and we finally get the chance to play his side in the CEV Volleyball Champions League”.
Uralochka has been going through ups and downs in the national league and is currently ranked fifth with only 11 points out of six matches. Last Friday the group mentored by Karpol suffered a 2:3 home defeat to Fakel NOVY URENGOI, a team that currently sits in 9th place in the charts.
On the other side Volero is once again dominating the scene in the Swiss league being atop of the charts with 27 points even though the start of the season was not that brilliant. In the last round Volero edged Düdingen 3:1 but this performance was marked by some silly mistakes in defense and reception.
“I am very satisfied with our performance in offense and in the first set we even achieved a 60% rate of efficiency especially via the contribution of our Cuban star Nancy Carrillo and 18-year old Karla Klaric” Volero head coach Dragutin Baltic points out. “However, we lacked composure and consistency in reception and this was evident especially in the third set. We need to avoid that kind of black-out to stand a chance against Uralochka”.
A six-time Olympian, Evgenia Estes (née Artamonova), will be returning back to Zurich after spending a couple of seasons (from 2004 through 2006) with Volero. Estes, who is 37 and this past summer represented Russia at the London Olympics, is one of the best players included in the roster of Uralochka together with Alexandra Pasynkova and Bulgarian Strashimira Filipova.
For more volleyball news from the Champions League – Women click here