Volleyball: FIVB assigns Brazilian coach to handle PH women's team

ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 03 2021 03:45 PM | Updated as of May 03 2021 05:06 PM

Volleyball: FIVB assigns Brazilian coach to handle PH women's team 1
Brazilian coach Jorge Edson Souza de Brito. Photo courtesy of the PNVF

MANILA, Philippines -- (UPDATED) FIVB, the world governing body for volleyball, has granted the request of the local federation for a Brazilian coach for the women's national team.

The Philippine National Volleyball Federation (PNVF) announced Monday that the FIVB has appointed former Olympic gold medalist Jorge Edson Souza de Brito of Brazil to the post.

"We are thankful for the FIVB's quick response to our request and we are more thankful that the federation picked an excellent man for the job," PNVF president Ramon "Tats" Suzara said in a statement.

"With Coach Jorge's vast experience as a coach and player, we are very sure that we will get the technology transfer we have aspired for," he added.

Souza de Brito was a member of the Brazilian team that won the gold medal in the Barcelona 1992 Olympics and later coached the Brazilian women's team to the gold medal in the Beijing 2008 Olympics. He has also coached several top clubs in the Brazilian league since 2002, and has won titles in Turkey and Japan.

Per his resume, Souza de Brito "specializes on teamwork and challenges, planning technical and tactics practices and draws strategies based results and analysis by the DataVolley program and personal sense."

The 54-year-old coach will work hand-in-hand with national women's team coach Odjie Mamon for two years upon his arrival in the Philippines in June or July. The FIVB will subsidize his salary, according to Suzara.

The federation president said Souza de Brito's hiring falls under the FIVB's coaching support for technical and tactical development of national teams project agreement.

"The FIVB will be paying for coach Jorge's salary but the PNVF will be responsible for his accommodation, food and local transport," Suzara explained.

Suzara sealed the FIVB assistance in a recent virtual meeting with FIVB general manager Fabio Azevedo, head of Technical and Development Department Steve Tutton, director for Asia and Oceania Luis Alexandre Pontes Rodrigues, and head of Sports Development Department Hitesh Malhotra. PNVF board member Ricky Palou joined Suzara in the meeting. 

Suzara said the PNVF applied for the FIVB's development project platform to strengthen the women's team that hasn't won a Southeast Asian Games medal since 2005. The FIVB also granted Kenya, Argentina and Turkey the same privilege last year.

"I would like to emphasize that we are very serious on improving our women's national team," he said. "At the moment, (Souza de Brito) will focus on the women's team only, and let's see if we can expand later to the youth squad."

The announcement of Souza de Brito's hiring came just days after the PNVF conducted a tryout for the national women's, men's, and beach volleyball teams. While the men's and beach volleyball tryouts were well attended, only 16 of the 40 players invited showed up to the women's event.

Suzara has previously said that the 16 players who attended the tryouts last Wednesday are assured of spots in the national team "in principle." 

It remains to be seen if another tryout will be held upon Souza de Brito's arrival. In a message to ABS-CBN News, Palau said they have yet to formally discuss if the coach will have a role in the selection of players for the national team.

"But I'm sure he will want to have a say in its formation," he added.