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15/08/2019 16:13
After a month in ‘isolation’, North Macedonia look forward to friendly matches
CEV EuroVolley 2019 Men

Skopje, North Macedonia, August 15, 2019. When the men’s national team of North Macedonia gathered in Mavrovo on July 14, questions were raised as to how the players would endure thirty days of isolation on the Bistra Mountain. Now, after spending a whole month completely focused on Volleyball, there is only one question. What is the level of their game after such an exhausting training period? Is it like in January when they first qualified for EuroVolley, is it like in the years when they played three finals and won silver medals in the CEV European League, or is it at least a level higher? The answer will come promptly, perhaps this weekend already, at the two friendly matches against Romania in Craiova.

“I am pleased with what we have done so far. We have worked hard. At first, fitness coach Raynald Choquet improved the physical condition of the players, and that was the main goal at the beginning.  Then, Ratko Pavlicevic helped me work on technical-tactical segment, and now my assistant will be Dusko Nikolic, who won a bronze medal with Serbia at the last CEV EuroVolley 2017 in Poland. Due to injuries, we are a little bit late in terms of Volleyball training, but there is enough time to correct our game after getting the first answers in Romania. The results are not that important right now, but I expect a great fight for every point. That will be the right attitude,” says head coach Nikola Matijasevic.

He has to solve all dilemmas in the coming days in which the Macedonian national team is going to play eight friendly matches. After Romania, Sweden will arrive in Skopje, followed by the traditional ‘Branko Hadziiljoski Chajka’ tournament, which will feature the national teams of Belgium, Bulgaria and Ukraine. The final form check will come at the two matches with Austria in early September. At the upcoming CEV EuroVolley 2019, North Macedonia will play in Ljubljana with Finland, Turkey, Russia, Belarus and Slovenia.

Due to the intensive work, some players sustained minor injuries, but the motivation is huge, so the motto ‘no pain no gain’ did not have to resound too often during the hard-working period in Mavrovo. The Macedonian Volleyball players have a unique chance to promote themselves on the grand European stage and leave a legacy for generations to come, so that participation in EuroVolley is not incidental, but the Red-and-Yellow team will become a regular feature at such major events. 

Team captain Nikola Gjorgjev is the star player of North Macedonia due to compete at EuroVolley for the first time in their history.

For further information, visit the official event website

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