Volleyball Ireland are delighted to be working with Student Sport Ireland on a range of initiatives that will see a closer link between the two sporting bodies. More details will be announced in due course but the first event is the production of the SSI League Finals in Maynooth today (Thurs 28th).
Volleyball Ireland will be streaming the event live on our YouTube Channel.
The event kicks off at 1030am with Trinity College Dublin taking on Maynooth in the first Women's semi final before NUI Galway entertain Uniiversity College Cork.
In the Men's draw RCSI take on IT Carlow before TU Dublin take on Galway Mayo IT.
Women’s Semi-Final 1
10.30am Trinity College Dublin v Maynooth University
Women’s Semi-Final 2
12pm NUI Galway v University College Cork
Men’s Semi-Final 1
1.30pm RCSI v IT Carlow
Men’s Semi-Final 2
3pm TU Dublin City Campus v Galway Mayo IT
SSI/VI Cup Draws
Immediately After Men’s Semi-Final 2
5pm Winner SF 1 v Winner SF 2
6pm Winner SF 1 v Winner SF 2
Bookings are now open for the Intl Coaching Masterclass event with Belgian Kristof de Loose. Kristof is a globally recognised expert in Youth Volleyball Coaching and we strongly recommend that anyone interested in Volleyball Coaching should attend.
Date: Thurs Dec 12
Venue: Sport Ireland Indoor Arena, Dublin
Cost: Free for VI members
Booking; Now via Go Membership. https://bit.ly/2Do1vlE
As part of a new feature to promote our International Squads, we are hosting a series of Interviews with players from our Junior, Senior and Beach Teams. First up we have the captain of the Women's u17 team Maria Jones. Maria also plays School Volleyball for Colaiste Mhuire in Ennis and National League with the Munster Thunder.
Representing Ireland Maria has visited the Faroe Islands, Sardinia and Copenhagen this year alone...
So Maria, you’ve been all over Europe this year playing Volleyball. How did you find the experience?
I found the experience incredible I enjoyed every second of it. Over the last two years I’ve made the best friends from all over the country and I will always be grateful for the opportunities and experiences I had with them. We are such a tight knit team which made it all that bit more fun for us. We trained really really hard and worked so much to get where we are and I’m so proud of what we achieved as a team.
I imagine, you’ve made some great friends playing Volleyball in Faroe Islands, Sardinia and Denmark – what is the camaraderie like in the u17 girls team?
Like I said we are such a tight knit bunch and we’re always the loudest and definitely the most social in every tournament we went to, we might not have won but we will always be remembered by the other teams for the friendships we made with them. We have made friends and contacts with players really from all over the continent!
What was the highlight of the Intl season for you?
I think the highlight of the season for me was winning against Iceland in Faroe Islands, I remember one of our coaches Jenny king crying tears of joy after that match and that honestly was the greatest part of it all.
What is the best part of playing Volleyball for Ireland?
I think the fact that your representing your country is a huge honor and wearing the flag on the jersey means a lot to everyone on the team, it’s something that none of us take lightly and we try to represent Ireland as well as we can always.
What did it feel like to win that final point against Iceland and clinch a first Intl victory?
Everyone involved that day was so hyped up and so focused on the task at hand. Everyone played their best that day, it was amazing. We were all really in the zone, we were able to put good scoring streaks together and we were very confident receiving serve. The last point was so exciting and the reactions of the coaches was the most rewarding part because of all the work Gianni, Teresa and Jenny put in behind the scenes. We felt that although we had put in good performances against the other teams, the win proved we could compete and it was a relief after all the hard work. We had all spent basically all our Christmas Holidays in training camp, with our coaches giving up so much of their time it was a great reward.
What are your ambitions in the future playing Volleyball?
We all have different ambitions for our futures, some girls would love to play abroad for university but in the short term future we all plan on playing all season with our schools and clubs and then see what is in store for us internationally. I am lucky in that I have such great coaches both at school and club so myself and the girls locally here in Ennis are just going to soak up as much advice and skills as we can and try to constantly raise our game.
How are your preparations for the new club and school season coming along?
Well myself and all the girls are all in different schools and clubs and we are all training super hard for the oncoming season so it will be very interesting to meet each other on different teams in school and club events.
Have you learnt much through this experience?
Yes I have learned so much over the past year and a bit. We have all grown so much as a team and as individuals. We have gained confidence and learned that hard work and what you put into things you will get out.
What advice would you give to younger players who are making their way in Volleyball?
Try to go to as many training sessions as you can, play with older and more experienced players as much as possible, and listen to what coaches are saying to you always. Believe and aim high!
Thanks Maria and good luck for the coming season!
Recreational volleyball is well and truly up and running for 2019-2020!
The West Rec. Final played out on October 5th in Loughrea, Galway was another successful tournament with new teams full of younger players making their first appearance this year.
The winners Serve-Ivors took the cup while Claremorris once again retained the shield.
Our South Rec has just commenced with an increase of 11 to 17 teams this year, with Cork club Net Force hosting the event last weekend. The competition is going from strength to strength with once again new clubs emerging like Cork Diggers and Youghal VC in action. Both Day 1 in the cup and shield are finished and we are looking forward to the final days in both competitions.
Impact VC leading the cup while newly established club Youghal VC head the shield event. Cup final will be played on December 7th in CIT while the shield will get us underway for 2020 on January 11th once again in CIT, Cork.
The Recreational Tournaments provide a great stepping stone from Social Volleyball to National League Competition, or simply a fun sporting day out. In 2018 the numbers of Recreational Players doubled to over 300, and that looks like increasing again.
For any teams out there looking for some fun alternatives and wishing to give recreational volleyball a go, please do not hesitate to get in touch. We will have more events scheduled in the new year catering for various levels and ages of all players.
lThis weekend youth teams from across three nations will descend upon Gormanston Park College Sports complex for Volleyball Ireland’s first ever youth development blitz and camp. The weekend camp will aim to build experience for our younger players through some challenging matches, without the pressure of international competition.
The event will see teams representing Denmark and Northern Ireland, as well as a range of regional representative teams made up of Ireland's National Team members and players from the new National Youth League. The blitz style event is partly funded through the CEV/SCA development fund and the Participation to Performance Programme. The schedule and concept will help prepare young players for Intl competition in the future.
General Manager of Volleyball Ireland, Gary Stewart said, "a key part of the strategy is to provide more opportunities for our young players to grow and learn and we are grateful to the CEV and Small Countries Association for their support. I'm sure the players and coaches will gain a lot from the weekend and I'd especially like to credit Development Officer Conor Flood for his drive and determination developing this project. It will be great to have our friends from Denmark and Northern Ireland with us for the weekend."
This is the first international youth event that Volleyball Ireland have hosted of its kind. The aim is to grow the event, providing opportunities for young Irish Volleyballers to to enjoy, learn and develop their skills. It will be the first in a series of Intl age group events that will provide opportunities for players to reach their potential.
If anyone wishes to come along and watch, there is free entry.
The teams will kick start the weekend with some training slots on Friday evening. Games will commence 9.30am, Saturday November 30th and will run through until 5pm. Then it’s onto dinner and Saturday night activities exclusively for the players and coaches.
The camp will finish on Sunday morning with some light training sessions and fun mixed games.
The East League is a fun mixed competition aimed for players playing Div1 and below. The first day, teams play a league style format with the top teams progressing to compete for the Cup on day 2. Teams who don’t make it to the Cup group will still get the chance to play for the Shield on day 2. It’s all to play for!
Where and When
Volleyball Ireland are delighted to publish it's 2019 progress report. You can download the full version at the bottom of the page.
The progress report will become a quarterly update on Volleyball activities highlighting some of the key achievements we are making against our Strategic Plan – Raising the Game. This edition covers 2019 to date.
The last nine months have been incredibly busy as we launched a new Strategy, kicked off an Inclusion plan, held an EGM and an AGM, delivered an Olympic Qualifier and adopted a new Constitution. We also held a record breaking awards evening with over 220 guests. We’ve also:
•Hosted the CEV Continental Cup Beach Volleyball Tournament
•Launched the first National Volleyball League for Junior Players, now at u16 & u18 ages
•Launched new four-year Strategic Plan
•Adopted a new Constitution and Governance rules
•Delivered of first Performance Camp for Beach Volleyball Players
•Competed in 2 x CEV European Zonal Championships
•Increased Grant acquisitions to develop new and innovative projects such as the Women in Sport DIVA programme
•Launched an Inclusion plan and Sitting Volleyball strategy
Behind the scenes we are supporting clubs attain ClubMark status and have rolled out a number of programmes to help develop youth sections for our clubs, including the CEV Schools Project. We have introduced the first Coaching Masterclass series which will see Volleyball coaches learn from each other at workshops across the country. On this we have secured the services of Kristof de Loose – a world class development coach to deliver the next Coaching Masterclass event on December 12th. Do not miss it.
And of course, we hosted the CEV Continental Cup – an event which really raised the profile of the sport in Ireland.
I would like sincerely thank all the volunteers that supported the event. As the Newstalk Radio show Off the Ball said, “It was a magical weekend and an incredible sight.” But could not have been possible without the 50+ volunteers that gave up their time for Volleyball. I think it really shows what can be achieved with ambition, hard work and everyone pulling together.
Included in this update are the results of our first Stakeholder survey which we rolled out in Spring. This will be used to benchmark our performance as a National Federation and it will help inform action plans to improve your experience of Volleyball in Ireland. Thanks to those that took the time to give us great, honest and invaluable feedback.
I hope you enjoy reading about our progress and the progressive strides we are making for the Irish Volleyball Community.
Grainne Culliton. President
Volleyball Ireland are looking for a Women's National Team Head Coach.
The voluntary position provides an opportunity to create an impact and leave a profound legacy on Irish Volleyball.
The successful candidate must:
• Be a Volleyball Ireland Registered Coach (Grade 1), or hold a recognised Volleyball coaching award or equivalent qualification from another Federation
• Commit to completing a Safeguarding and Protecting Children workshop
• Have time to commit to the role
• Sign and abide by Volleyball Ireland Code of Conduct and Policies
Please send a 1 page cover letter and accompanying CV outlining your suitability to the role to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Friday December 6th.
Note: This role description is not exhaustive. It is intended as an outline indication of the areas of activity and will be revised with positive ‘changing needs’ as required to support Volleyball Ireland and the High Performance programme. The applicant’s vision for the role that will be discussed at interview stage, may alter the content of the Job Description.
4v4 Mini Volleyball Programme for Schools
Over the last two weeks Volleyball Ireland have been delivering a new 4v4 Participation Competition for post-primary schools. The Mini Volleyball format is played on a Badminton Court sized area and provides more touches, and more action for the players. The format is used as a transition from Spikeball to full 6v6 Volleyball.
The first event was held in Kilkenny’s Watershed arena with 28 teams and 164 Girls from across Ireland taking part, with representatives from Kerry, Galway, Kildare, Dublin, Kilkenny, Laois, Waterford and Clare. The programme is aimed at 1st and 2nd year Students.
The Boys event was held in the same venue yesterday (Nov 20) with 140 players from 22 teams enjoying a day of Volleyball action. The event included Colaiste Na Hinse of Bettystown, Co. Meath who have been inspired to play Volleyball after the hosting of the CEV Beach Volleyball Continental Cup in the village earlier this Summer.
Conor Flood, Volleyball Ireland Development Officer said, “The 4v4 Mini Volley programme is really to help players get used to playing Volleyball. Many players have come from Spikeball in Primary Schools and this format really helps them get used to the skills, rules and tactics of Volleyball. Some of these players would also be playing National Youth League Volleyball with clubs and you can really see the benefits of this format for developing their skill set. The emphasis is on keeping the ball in the air as much as possible with all players getting plenty of touches."
The focus now turns to the Senior Cup with the final chalked in for December 12th in UCD.
Clodagh NicCanna and Barbara Wojcik-Jaruga have joined the Volleyball Ireland Board.
Clodagh is well known in Volleyball circles as a long standing player, coach and referee of the Dublin Volleyball Club, as well as being a decorated National Team Player. She'll use her vast experience to take up a role overseeing the Competitions and Development Commission. Clodagh is currently the Development Director of a global software company.
Barbara, who is a tax accountant by trade is currently working with Coca Cola Helenic Bottling Company, in their Dublin 15 HQ. Barbara will take over the role of Treasurer from Anna Dukacz, who has stepped down after several years service. Barbara who hails from Poland is currently playing Recreational Volleyball with the Balbriggan club.
Jeff King, who has led the development of the new Strategic Plan has stepped down after three years service.
The Board of Volleyball Ireland would like to welcome both Barbara and Clodagh to the team, and thank Anna and Jeff for their years of tireless service helping shape the Association.
The Directors of Volleyball Ireland are now: Grainne Culliton (President), Denise Tallon (VP), Regina Halpin (Secretary), Aidan Curran (Governance), Peter McDonnell (HR), Barbara Wojcik-Jaruga (Treasurer) and Clodagh NicCanna (Director of Competitions & Development).
Volleyball Ireland are actively looking for Directors with specific skills in Commercial Activities and Performance Sport to join the Board.
Volleyball Ireland are delighted to announce that renowned International Youth Volleyball Coach Kristof de Loose will be the guest coach at the next Coaching Masterclass event. The Belgian comes with an incredible reputation as one of the best development coaches in Europe, and signifies an unrivalled opportunity for Irish Coaches to learn from the very best.
De Loose currently works as Director of Sports Training for Volley Vlaanderen (VV). He is responsible for all of the Volleyball coaching courses organised in the Flanders region and has been involved in coaching Volleyball at the youth, junior and senior level for more than 20 years. Moreover, he is a lecturer at the Flemish Coaching School, a Start2Volley (the youth programme of Volley Vlaanderen) trainer, as well as a member of the Youth Committee at Volley Vlaanderen.
De Loose works for the Confederation de Europeene Volleyball as a Coach tutor and recently delivered a high quality workshop at the CEV Coaches convention in Slovenia this Summer.
Date: Thurs 12th December
Venue: Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena, Dublin
Content: The session will be a mix of theory and practical work that will inspire youth coaches.
Cost: VI members FREE, Non Members €10
Booking: Registration is live on Weds November 13th. Limited Places.
The partnership will see the Dublin based firm, become the Headline sponsor of the 2019/20 Volleyball Ireland Association Cup and Shield Competitions, taking the flagship Finals in the Volleyball calendar taken to the next level. The Cup and Shield Finals will take place on Sunday May 10th at the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena, with the event including fun coaching sessions for juniors in between matches and entertainment to keep fans intrigued throughout the day. Improving the quality of the Finals Event is a key aim of Volleyball Ireland’s 20x20 pledge to raise the profile of Volleyball and its female players, coaches and referees.
Sports Team Manager at ODON Kathryn Reddy, was joined by Vinnie Dos Santos of defending Men’s Cup champions Dublin VC and Marie-Claire Sobogal of Shield holders UCD at today’s announcement at ODON HQ in Herbert Place.
Reddy said, “O’Driscoll O’Neil are delighted to add Volleyball to our expansive portfolio of sports. We support and encourage Volleyball Ireland’s ambitious plans to improve the Finals Event for players and supporters alike. We are excited to be a part of what will be a fantastic Event in May for clubs, fans and of course the players. O’Driscoll O’Neil take pride in being the number one Insurance provider for Sports Insurance and with over 25 years of experience within this market we are happy to offer our expertise and services to Volleyball Ireland”
General Manager of Volleyball Ireland, Gary Stewart added, “We are delighted that ODON are supporting this years Association Cup and Shield Competitions. This support will allow us to improve the production of the Finals and create an event and atmosphere that players will love competing in and fans will enjoy watching. It’s our flagship competition and our players deserve to be playing in the best venue in the country, with the stands packed to the rafters.”
National League Clubs, Recreational teams and Student Sport Ireland affiliated clubs are reminded that deadline for entries is November 20th and can be made via the Go Membership portal (under events and courses). The Cup draw will be streamed live on November 22nd.
Volleyball Ireland would like to thank Niall, Kathryn, Laura and the rest of the team at O’Driscoll O’Neil for their support.
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