Volleyball association on the hunt for a new coach

Volleyball association on the hunt for a new coach

Thailand players Wilavan Apinyapong, No.10, and Malika Kanthong, No.15, compete against South Korea in Nakhon Ratchasima on Sunday. (FIVB photo)
Thailand players Wilavan Apinyapong, No.10, and Malika Kanthong, No.15, compete against South Korea in Nakhon Ratchasima on Sunday. (FIVB photo)

Volleyball Association of Thailand president Somporn Chaibangyang admitted yesterday the VAT may hire a foreign coach after the national women's team missed out on a ticket to the 2020 Olympics.

Thailand lost 3-0 to South Korea on Sunday in the final of the Asian Olympic qualification event in Nakhon Ratchasima with only the champions earning a berth for the Tokyo Games.

Thailand coach Danai Sriwacharamaytakul announced his resignation immediately after the match to take responsibility for the failure.

Somporn said the VAT had not yet accepted Danai's resignation.

"We will discuss who is suitable for the position. It may be Danai who is the most suitable one," Somporn said.

"We will also have to discuss whether it is time for us to use a foreign coach."

Danai replaced Kiattipong Radchatagriengkai as coach of the Thai women's volleyball team in 2016.

Kiattipong is the most successful coach of the Thai women's volleyball team.

During Kiattipong's reign from 1998-2016, Thailand won the Asian Championship twice in 2009 and 2013 among other honours.

Under Danai, the Thais had their best ever Asian Games result in 2018 when they finished second.

Several players are likely to quit the national side following Sunday's loss including Pleumjit Thinkaow, Nootsara Tomkom, Onuma Sittirak and Malika Kanthong, who are all in their 30s.

Wilavan Apinyapong, 35, said before the tournament that this year's Olympics would be her last tournament for Thailand.

After they failed to secure the country's first ever Olympic volleyball berth, Wilavan said she was willing to help the team until the end of the year.

"We may ask the older players to remain with the team to help the young ones during the transitional period," Somporn said.


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