Yellow Tigers start European Championship preparation with brand new national coach Kris Vansnick: “I don’t consider myself a lifebuoy”


The Yellow Tigers started their preparation for the European Women’s Volleyball Championship (August 15 – September 3) on Monday. Kris Vansnick, the man who was promoted to head coach of the Yellow Tigers instead of the suspended Gert Vande Broek, wants to continue working on the foundations laid. He stated this on Wednesday, a month before the start of the European Championship, which is partly organized in Belgium.

“A page has turned,” Vansnick confided at a press conference at the Eurovolley Center in Vilvoorde. “It was important to maintain continuity. The group remains the same and so do I, even though I now have responsibilities. Gert has made the decision to stop because he wanted the European Championships to be prepared serenely. Personally, I don’t consider myself a life preserver. The most important thing now is the European Championship and the Olympic qualifying tournament.”

Vansnick has been Vande Broek’s assistant since 2008 and wants to follow in his predecessor’s footsteps, albeit with his own accents. “Each trainer has his own method. It leads to nothing to copy, especially if it is a bad copy. I stay myself. I’ve been Gert’s assistant for fifteen years, so we’re not suddenly going to play differently. We are going to strengthen the staff with people who have international experience. The German Paul Sens will be my full-time assistant, and the Turks Dehri Can Dehrioglu and Alper Hamerucu will also join.”

The brand new trainer assured that, despite the recent unrest, his group is fully focusing on the sporting aspect. “The players have been able to turn the page because they have not been confronted with all these issues. It is important that they focus on the sporty. I see a group that does a good job in training,” said Vansnick.


The Tigers leave for Bulgaria on Wednesday, July 26 for a four-day training camp with three matches against Bulgaria. Then it will go to the Czech Republic from August 2 to 5, with two games against the Czechs. Finally, there will be two more matches against Slovakia, on August 12 in Beveren and August 13 in Ghent. The first European Championship match is scheduled for August 17 against Hungary.

“We rotated a lot during the Golden League. Now we will go back to our starting players, with a precise role for everyone. Currently the training sessions are tough because it takes time to get physically ready. The preparation matches are also important to get into the rhythm and raise the level,” said the selection manager.

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