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Amoa lifts training intensity as the clock ticks down to Pacific Games

Updated: Apr 30

The PNG Amoa National Indoor Volleyball Men’s Squad are in full training sessions and having trial games in preparation for the upcoming Pacific Games, which will be hosted in Honiara, the Capital of Solomon Islands, from November 19th to December 2nd, 2023.

Team Amoa have been training for over three months in anticipation of the Pacific Games. The 40-men squad have been trimmed down to 16 players. Two players will be cut off and the final 14-men squad will travel to the Solomon Islands next month.

Both men’s and women’s teams have had combined training sessions and trials for two weeks. They are now into their third week of trials to select the cream of the crop to make the final cut for the respective squads.

PNG Amoa Men’s Coach, Matthew Walo said the preparations so far have gone well. The boys are working on their combinations and team chemistry. The team spirit and bonding between the players have been good.

“This is our final preparations. We are now in our pre-competition. We have covered the general phase, specific phase, and now we are in the pre-competition phase. Our focus now is on team combination, offense and defense.

“After we select our final 14-squad, we should be able to refine our front-court and back-court defense. We need the setters to be accurate and their options to be on target. We have two new setters, John Soia and Billy Anthon after Via Kapa left. Hopefully, these setters can have the accuracy and options to feed the spikers.

“We have a lot of young potential attacking players. We just need to get our defense and offense right to be competitive, come the Pacific Games,” coach Walo emphasized.

Amoa were supposed to travel abroad to have a few trial games against overseas-based teams. However, due to funding issues, they are having in-house trial sessions between the teams participating in the National Capital District Volleyball Association (NCDVA).

“We were scheduled to travel overseas to play a couple of trial games but unfortunately, due to funding, we decided to hold our trials here. We have arranged for four-week trials. This is our third

weekend of trials and our final trials will be held next weekend (October 14th, 2023). After the four-week trials ended, we would select our final 14 players,” Walo explained.

With less than a month to go before the Pacific Games tip-off, the train-on squad have increased the intensity of their training sessions and trial games. The High-Performance team is facilitating and assisting Amoa in their training preparations.

“We have increased the training intensity to accommodate for the exposure that we should be having overseas. The high-performance team has lifted the intensity of the training and our skills court-work as well. That is to incorporate the time that we could have gone abroad to gain and use in our in-house trials and court sessions. We can be able to accommodate for our lack of having trial games overseas,” he added.

The final 14-men squad will have intense training sessions and trials in the next six weeks, as the days count down for the Pacific Games to commence. The players will put in the hard work to prepare themselves for the two-week tournament in Honiara.

“The next six weeks will be more on attack and blocking, as well as offense and defense. We will also focus on building combination and team chemistry to set outside hitters. All in all, preparation is getting to expectations.

“In these trials, we will see who goes well with whom – that should give us a clear indication of where our weaknesses and strengths are. The last Saturday before November, we should be able to iron out those little areas that will enable us to be competitive in the Pacific Games.”

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