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2018/19 SVL Season Starts this Weekend

After a very successful 2017/18 season for Glasgow based Su Ragazzi, can one of the most decorated clubs in Scottish Volleyball history reach the heights of last season?

With Su Ragazzi Women winning back to back trebles, all pressure will be on them to make it a tteble-treble as the new season commences this Saturday. The defending champions will make the trip north to take on Volleyball Aberdeen, who are now under the guidance of Ross Allan, in the hope of starting their title defence with a strong performance. Ross commented ‘This is an exciting season for VA. We are working hard to try and challenge the title and we believe we have the squad to be serious contenders. We’ve been working hard on running a varied, high tempo offence which we hope will be very challenging for our opponents to contend with. We are looking forward to our first match which is against champions Su Ragazzi and it will give us a chance to test ourselves and to see the progress we’ve made.’

City of Edinburgh Women have had a few personnel changes this season in their team but this won’t weaken them in their pursuit of silverware this year when they travel to Edinburgh Jets. Newly promoted Caledonia West will get a chance to assess their season ahead when they take on the University of Edinburgh in their first match in the top flight.

With two Su Ragazzi sides in the Men’s Premier, it certainly bodes well for the Glasgow side. City of Glasgow Ragazzi begin the defence of their crown against Volleyball Aberdeen while Forza Ragazzi will host NUVOC in the first match. South Ayrshire and City of Edinburgh have had a few changes in the summer break and will be looking to get their seasons off to a strong start in Prestwick. City Coach Ally Jack, who has just been appointed Head Coach of the Men’s National Team said ‘I am delighted to be taking on the additional responsibility of the NT. Hopefully myself and the other coaches will be able to make it a very competitive year on both fronts.’

In the Men’s League One it is sure to be a close run season with all 6 teams vying to win promotion to the Premier. Last year’s Runners up City of Edinburgh II will be hoping to go one better when they start their season away to Edinburgh Jets. Jets under the new tutelage of Tomas Zavrel will be looking to upset their Edinburgh rivals very early on.

John Scrimgeour’s Dundee start their new season against David McEwan’s Lenzie. Both coaches are very experienced and will be pulling on their years of coaching to try to outwit each other on the court. Finally newly promoted University of Edinburgh will take to the court against Glasgow Mets. Newly appointed coach Ben Pipes talks about his new teams chances ‘The University of Edinburgh are intent on translating the ethos cultivated in the training environment into the match arena. Expect to see a determined, creative and focused unit on court. I have been very impressed with the team in the training environment and look forward to working with the team for the 2018/2019 season.” 

In Women’s League One, NUVOC will be looking to bounce back straight to the Premier League when they take on Su Ragazzi in their opening match. NUVOC captain Sharon Versteeg told us about NUVOC’s aspirations for the season.

A packed day of Volleyball at Queensferry will see newly confirmed Head Coach Zoe Smith take charge of her first National League matches when City of Edinburgh II host Caledonia West II & Edinburgh Jets II. Zoe gave a little insight into her new challenge ‘I’m really excited to be leading the W2 team this season and seeing the girls’ training being put into practice. This is a great opportunity for the girls to play some competitive matches.’ Dundee will host Glasgow International in the final match of the division at fortress Craigie.

The last match of the weekend will be a Granite City derby between Kamikaze Seaton and Volleyball Aberdeen Thunder. Both teams will have an eye on the overall prize to gain promotion to League 1. ‘VA Thunder host local rivals Kamikaze in the long awaited local Derby.  Last year Kamikaze were too strong for us.  This year we look forward to reaping the benefits of a settled team and more consistent performances. Our youth development programme is producing some great young athletes who bring energy and enthusiasm to the squad.  We have started the season well and have confidence in our new look mix of youth and experience.  We look forward to an exciting match.’