Lausanne, Switzerland, March 20, 2018 – Former Italy international Nadia Centoni has backed Italy to overcome Caterina Bosetti’s injury and challenge for the medals at the Japan 2018 FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship later this year.
In 2014 Centoni and Bosetti were in the squad that helped Italy finish fourth when they hosted the tournament. Centoni has since retired from international volleyball, but Bosetti ruptured knee ligaments playing in Italy’s Serie A for Modena on March 10 and faces a race against time to be fit for the tournament that runs from September 29-October 20.
Bosetti underwent an operation two days later in Rome, and while no time limit has been put on her recovery the wing spiker is likely to miss the inaugural FIVB Women’s Volleyball Nation’s League that begins on May 15 and concludes on July 1.
The 24-year-old Bosetti helped Italy to silver at the 2017 FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix, and Centoni feels that Italy still have the chance to celebrate another medal despite Bosetti’s potential absence.
“They have a young squad with lots of talent and an excellent coach in Davide Mazzanti,” Centoni told La Gazzetta dello Sport
. “Certainly after what happened to Caterina Bosetti there is a gap in position four, but it is still a team that can be successful at the World Championship.
“They have a lot of time to prepare ahead of the World Championship in October. I’m not sure how the team will be organised, but they can enjoy a good result.”
While Centoni is in no doubt that Italy will feel the impact of Bosetti’s absence, she has high hopes for youngster Paolo Egonu.
The 19-year-old opposite spiker was also part of the team that won World Grand Prix silver, and she has already made a huge impact on the Italy side despite not turning 20 until December.
Egonu came through the Italy age-group teams and played for Club Italia where she continued her development. In 2015 she made her international debut and then in 2017 she took her next step and signed for Volley Novara, a team that focuses less on player development and more on winning trophies.
Egonu hasn’t broken stride, and so far she has helped them win the 2017 Italian Super Cup Italia and the 2017-18 Italian Cup.
“Thankfully Italy have Egonu,” Centoni said. “I said from the start of the season that she has huge potential, especially as she was playing for a team with huge expectations.
“She has shown the ability to continually develop and she is lucky to come under the guidance of Massimo Barbolini and Carlo Parisi, two successful coaches. She is also playing with some world class players, who have won Olympic and World Championship medals. Just training with that squad will mean she will continue to improve massively.”