Thailand has been singled out as one of the most improved Volleyball nations recently all thanks to an impressive development program.
The FIVB development program "2001 National Team Project," which has been very well supported since 1979 by the Petroleum Authority of Thailand, has been responsible for seeing Thailand record some impressive results on the international scene.
Through the program a selection of potential players taller than 175 cm were trained and housed in Yala, a city in the southern part of Thailand, where they received three years of special tuition. The program has been such a success that the Thailand national teams can now stand alongside such Volleyball greats as the leading teams of Asia; China, Korea and Japan.
On their last trip to the Asian Championships in Vietnam in 2003 the Thailand womens team placed fourth behind China, Japan and Korea. Previously, they scored a historic victory over Japan in 2001 and finished runner-up at the 11th Asian Senior Women's Volleyball Championship, hosted in Thailand in the same year. In 2002 the junior team defeated Korea and Japan to finish second at the 11th Asian Junior Women's Volleyball Championship in Vietnam.
Following this recent success the Thailand Volleyball Association has now launched another project known as the "2004 National Team Project", in which, since the end of 2001, they have been supported by BEC World. This new project will ensure that the next generation of Thai players will be nurtured and encouraged to achieve even greater goals than their predecessors.
On the big international scale Thailand, currently 16th on the FIVB world rankings, are still growing. Their 17th-place finish at the 2002 Women's World Championship in Germany and a 9th at the 2003 World Grand Prix are clear indications that the road to the top is still a long one.
Having missed out on Olympic qualification in May, Thailand will be looking to take something out of the 2004 season with a solid performance in the 2004 World Grand Prix especially since they are hosting a first phase group of games in Bangkok.
11 ก.ค. 47 01:54:33