The current defending World Champions, it’s safe to say that the Polish national has a target in its back. The team is under a lot of pressure, from both the fans and media. Gone are the legends of Paweł Zagumny, Mariusz Wlazły, and Michał Winiarski who shined in 2014. Although the team is currently ranked third in the world, behind only Brazil and the USA, it finished last year’s EuroVolley in 10th place, and failed to medal in every World League since their WCH title. Things looked very bright in this year’s VNL, with the team storming to a 10-0 record, but it ultimately finished in 5th place.
Recent hired coach Vital Heynen is known for extracting the best out of every one that has ever played for him. That is how he took teams such as the German national squad and Bundesliga’s Friedrichshafen to unprecedented success. However, his training rigor has surprised even the most seasoned of Poland’s players:
Jakub Kochanowski: “The coach’s intensity has definitely surprised us, because so far there has not been any easy training. We work really hard. I think it will bring a lot of good for us.”
Piotr Nowakowski: “For now, we are doing everything to survive. I hope that in the coming days this fatigue will pass. We are barely moving, but certainly more freshness will come in the coming days and quality will also come.”
Damian Wojtaszek: “We have started very hard from the very beginning and the training are sessions are at a high level. Each session lasts at least three hours, sometimes longer.”