The Japanese media’s analysis of Manabeho: “Why did we pick two liberos? Because we have Miyabe!”

Local media has been buzzing about Japan Women’s National Volleyball Team head coach Masayoshi Manabe’s roster for the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris.

On July 1, the Japan Volleyball Association unveiled the roster of the country’s women’s volleyball team for the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris. The most prominent is the number of liberos. Manami Kojima and Satomi Fukudome are two of them. In addition, a reserve libero, Akane Yamagishi, was selected. This is unprecedented. This is the first time a team has traveled to the Olympics with two liberos since the libero system was first introduced in 1998. Unlike the FIVB’s Volleyball Nations League (VNL), which has a 14-player roster, the Olympics has a 12-player roster, so teams usually only have one libero. In the VNL, 사설 토토사이트 two is the norm.

Naturally, the news made waves in Japan. “The selection of two liberos was a surprise of sorts,” said Kokokara on April 4, “and whether it was the right or wrong choice will be seen at the Paris Games.”

On June 6, Japanese media outlet Number Web published an analytical article titled, “We chose two liberos because we have Airi Miyabe. The article emphasized the presence of middle blocker Airi Miyabe in explaining why Manabe’s team included two liberos on its roster for the Paris Olympics.

According to the article, Manabe has identified “solid defense” as the key to the Paris Games, and Kojima and Fukudome will be assigned different roles despite playing the same libero position. Manabe sees Kojima as a sub-receiver and Fukudome as a digger.

The Japanese style of speed volleyball is rooted in digs. Against stronger teams from Europe, South America, and elsewhere who are more physically fit, Japan’s strategy is to keep the ball alive and persistently look for opportunities. When they do get a counterattack opportunity, they use a variety of quick attack options, such as two-step attacks, pipe attacks, and fast attacks, to rack up points before the opponent can even run a block. This is where the setter’s skills come into play, but they also need to be able to receive the ball reliably to get it to the setter. For Japan, the libero is both the shield and the focal point of the offense.

However, the Olympic roster is limited to 12 players, which means that more liberos means fewer players in other positions. Outside hitter Ai Kurogo, who represented Japan at the Tokyo 2021 Summer Olympics, was also cut from the roster for Paris.

“What makes Miyabe a convincing choice for the two liberos is his versatility. Not only is she a natural middle blocker, but she can also play one-point server, one-point blocker, and even outside hitter in the event of an injury, which is a rare skill set. “She’s a rare player who can play any position and any role,” he said, adding that Miyabe solves this dilemma. Miyabe alone can play all three roles: middle blocker, outside hitter, and one-point server. If the media accounts are to be believed, it’s not unreasonable for Manabe to select another libero even as he reduces his offensive resources.

Born in 1998 to a Nigerian father and Japanese mother, Miyabe is a mixed-race athlete who was first capped by Japan in 2015 as a senior at Kumrankai High School in Japan. She then went on to play at the College of Southern Idaho in the United States before transferring to the University of Minnesota in 2022, where she experienced the American Collegiate Volleyball League.

Miyabe’s transition to middle blocker hasn’t been long in coming. She is in her third year. Previously, she was primarily an outside hitter and an outside hitter. She was a promising prospect at the time, but the move to middle blocker has allowed her to utilize her original strength, her high hitting percentage. She is also a hexagonal resource who can serve as well as the media describes.

There are 22 days left until the start of the women”s volleyball competition in Paris. While we”re looking forward to the performance of the two liberos Kojima and Fukudome, we”re also looking forward to Miyabe”s presence.

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