Following their victory at the 17th Asian Women’s Volleyball Championship, Thai officials announced Monday that they will prepare two national teams to play in upcoming tournaments, according to a Bangkok Post report.
Thailand defeated Japan 3-0 to win their second-ever Asian title last Saturday in Nakhon Ratchasima.
In November the Thai team will play at the World Grand Champions Cup in Japan as Asian champions.
They will also play in the SEA Games in Myanmar in December.
Next year they will have a busy schedule, as they are eligible to play in all of the following: the World Championship, the World Grand Prix, the Asian Games, and the Asian Cup (AVC Cup).
“We need two teams with about 30 players because we will have to play in several tournaments,” said Charnrit Wongprasert, a senior official at the Volleyball Association of Thailand (VAT).
“We should draft in more young players. Some of them are good but have not yet been given chances to play for the national team.”
He said at the World Grand Champions Cup all first-team players will be on the squad as well as some younger players in order for them to gain experience.
At the SEA Games, he said Thailand will use the first team because the second-string team might not be good enough to beat Vietnam.
He also called on the government to give more support.
“We have been successful mainly because of support from the private sector. But we still need more support from the government,” he said.
“We may get financial support after our success but what we need is support for long-term development.”
Upon winning the Asian title, the team received nearly seven million baht in financial rewards from its sponsors, including Thai Beverage Marketing (one million baht) and AIS (1.5 million baht).
Head coach of the Thai team, Kiattipong Radchatakriengkrai, said the VAT can create a strong second national team, but they need time and money.
VAT president Somporn Chaibangyang said the Thailand players will give HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn their Asian Championship gold medals.
The team is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra on Friday. Image/BangkokPost.com