Finland started their 2017 World League campaign with three defeats in Korea, but they are out to show their best and take their first victory of the season in front of their home crowd.
After their successful stint in the World Championship qualification tournament in the Czech Republic town of Karlovy Vary, Sammelvuo had to change five players in the roster.
“We will have that same roster when we play in Helsinki,” Sammelvuo explained. “Now I have added opposite Urpo Sivula
, who previously had a minor leg injury, but now he is back in good shape.”
For the Finns, the home tournament is always something very special. Middle blocker Sauli Sinkkonen
sees this event on home soil as a way of thanking the fans for their support.
“We hope we are great role models for the junior players and that they can gain good energy to pursue playing volleyball,” Sinkkonen said. “Our fans are always travelling with us all over the world, so we owe them to play all our best on one weekend at home court.”
Finland will face Slovakia on Thursday, then will take on China and Australia on Friday and Saturday, respectively.
“We will fight in every rally until the end,” Sinkkonen said. “We will never give up even in difficult situations.”