Junior Girls training for European Championships

Sunday, April 4, 2010, 21:45

The Girls’ Volleyball Junior National Team is in its final preparations for the Final round of the Junior Girls’ European Championships (Small Countries Division), which will be held between the 8th and 10th April in Luxembourg. This is the second time that Malta will be participating in this competition reserved for U/18 players, after a very good showing in the first ever appearance two years ago in Liechtenstein.

The squad representing Malta at the Junior European Championships 2010 in LuxembourgDuring the 2008 edition of these Championships, the bronze medal match that the Maltese girls had played against the host team had resulted into a nail biting one, and it had ended with the score of 2-3, due to some very controversial referee’s decisions in favour of the Liechtenstein team. However, the Maltese girls proved their potential and that encouraged the Malta Volleyball Association to continue on its path of strengthening the Junior sector.

The current Junior Girls national team, which has been preparing for the last months at the Cottonera Sports Complex, is made up of the following players: Raissa Abela, Caroline Borg, Lara Caruana, Roxette Caruana, Daniela Ellul, Anna Grech, Denise Grech, Leanne Spiteri and Sarah Spiteri.

This will be the first ever international tournament for the majority of the players, and a good opportunity to learn and gain some valuable experience. Malta will be fielding one of the youngest teams of all competing squads, with Sarah Spiteri who’s only 14, and Denise Grech and Caroline Borg only a year older. The team captain is Roxette Caruana.

Malta will be facing Ireland in the first match, followed by Cyprus, Luxembourg and Liechtenstein. The Maltese had met the same four teams in the previous edition of the Junior European Championships, winning 3-0 against Ireland, whilst losing with the same score against Luxembourg and Cyprus.

Luxembourg and Cyprus, respectively Champions and Runners up in the last two editions, still seem to be stronger than the rest, and most probably the match between them will decide who to finish in top spot.

The team will be accompanied by Mr. Branko Vlahovic, Malta Volleyball Association President, as well as Mr. Nello Calleja, who has been chosen by the European Volleyball Confederation as one of the International Referees to officiate in this tournament.

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