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Brazil spikers halt in Doha en route to World Cup

Brazil chase their third world title, but face tough opponents in the 12-team competition in Japan.
Brazilian Coach Rena Del Zoto Watches His Players Train At The Al Arabi Sports Club During A Stopover In Doha En Route To Japan For The World Cup
Brazilian coach Rena del Zoto watches his players train at the Al Arabi Sports Club during a stopover in Doha en route to Japan for the World Cup. IQ Photo: Vinod Divakaran

World’s top-ranked team and reigning Olympic champions Brazil were in Doha on Tuesday for a brief stopover on their way to the FIVB Men’s World Cup to be held at three venues – Hiroshima, Fukuoka and Nagano – in Japan from October 1 to 15.

The Brazilians had a brief training session under the watchful eyes of their coach Rena del Zoto at the Al Arabi Sports Club.

Del Zoto said the team decided to break its journey in Doha in order to avoid fatigue for the players.

“We also know about the good facilities for volleyball in Doha and decided to have a training session during the stopover,” the coach said.

Del Zoto predicted a tough competition at the World Cup.

Nasr Al Malki, The Manager Of The Al Rayyan Volleyball Team
IQ Photo: Vinod Divakaran

“It’s not easy as all the best teams will be there. We expect a tough competition from Poland and the US,” he said.

Brazil, winners of the World Cup in 2003 and 2007, failed to qualify for the finals in 2015 when the US lifted the title.

“We’ve had a good training session and our players look totally focused,” he added.

A practice match was scheduled between the visitors and Al Rayyan Sports Club, but it had to be cancelled as the local side comprised mostly of national team players who just returned from the Asian Championship in Tehran and needed time to recover.

“It was fantastic that we could host the Brazilians. Unfortunately we couldn’t have the practice match as our players just returned from Tehran and they needed time to recover,” said Rayyan team manager Nasser Al Malki.