28-07-2016: Official presentation of the upcoming CEV 8 Nations Group U17M

Ostuni, Italy, July 28, 2016 – The meeting being held at the seat of the Municipal Council of Ostuni yesterday focussed on the official presentation of the upcoming CEV 8 Nations Group U17M to be hosted there from July 28-31. The national teams of Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands and Spain will be vying for first place in order to secure their participation in next year’s inaugural championship. The pre-event press conference was attended by the main Local Authorities of the city, FIPAV (Italian Volleyball Federation), CONI and Italy’s coach Mario Barbiero along with the player Damiano Catania (libero).

Gianfranco Coppola, Mayor of Ostuni: “I very much look forward to hosting such an important event. My sincere gratitude for the trust placed in our city to be an international sports scenario. Ostuni can boast a thriving sporting reality, where volleyball especially has a key role. Recent great results obtained by Pallavolo 2000 Ostuni (the promotion to Serie B) have been achieved also thanks to the dedication and commitment of their managers I will continue to support.”

Luigi Dell’Anna, President of FIPAV Regional Committee: “Nothing is left to chance. Ostuni has been chosen not only for its attractive location – in the heart of the region of Apulia – but also for being the core of the fruitful development of volleyball in Apulia, along with the city of Castellana. The National team include three players from there, meaning that our efforts in terms of promotion and training of young athletes may be fulfilled at national as well as international level. I am very proud to represent this sports movement. We will try our best and take this opportunity to learn from this experience.”

Margherita Penta, Councillor for Sport of Ostuni City Council: “The numerous beauties and worth of this area are major factors bur what also matters is the first time that we have been hosting such a high-level event. I would like to thank FIPAV for their confidence and the untiring and deep commitment of Pallavolo 2000 Ostuni over the years, the feather in the cap along with well-equipped facilities.”

Nicola Cainazzo, CONI Provincial Delegate of Brindisi: “I would like to express my thanks to the Mayor, the Councillor and the whole Municipality for focusing on such a sporting event among those scheduled in this full summer calendar. And to FIPAV as well for drawing a special attention on the region of Apulia, which has an important tourism offer and a sport-related promising home-grown athletes who have been achieving great results so far.”

Angelo Blasi, Pallavolo 2000 Ostuni President:”We have started this year determined to go for the best result. We know it would be a hard one but we managed eventually. We did it as a very team, not forgetting the warm support by the crowds. My special thanks to the whole Municipality for the opportunity to train and play in such prestigious facilities and to FIPAV for hosting this international tournament. I hope it will serve as springboard for us in the future.”

Giuseppe Manfredi, FIPAV Vice-President: “I would like to thank the whole Municipality, Mr. Angelo Biasi and the club for the enthusiasm displayed so promptly. This qualification tournament is an important event for us. The athletes are U15 and that means we are looking to the future with confidence and excitement, already committed in hard work to show that we take an interest in such valuable young players. Ostuni has been hosting several sporting events but an international one. It is worth such an opportunity.”

Mario Barbiero, coach of Italy: “Striving constantly for excellence means being focussed and determined to go for the best result. I would like to thank you all for your warm welcome. The place where we have been staying offers the right conditions for us to prepare for this fixture in the best way. These are major factors, hence my thanks to the FIPAV Local Organising Committee The boys are very committed to working hard and doing their upmost, showing a competitive attitude for the future. Being here is great, sports offers an educational opportunity to get in touch with different cultures, practices and attitudes. This opportunity may be seen as an enhancing resource for them and all the athletes to follow to grow. Volleyball at youth level here in Apulia is a thriving one. Despite Italy is among the 4-5 countries in the top-ranking, we should not forget that there is still a lot to work to be done.”

Damiano Catania, libero: “We are working hard here. Besides our training ahead of the tournament kick-off playing some friendly matches with Pallavolo 2000 Ostuni, we have had the opportunity to visit the city and appreciate it. We hope we will do our best.”

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