Posts by JoanaBG

    The following players will be travelling to Japan. No surprises.

    S: Ognjenović, Mirković

    OPP: Bošković, Bjelica

    MB: Rašić, Popović, Aleksić, Kocić

    OH: Mihajlović, Buša, Blagojević, Milenković, Lazović

    L: Popović

    Two players will be cut from the roster before the competition starts. I'm just praying Lazović makes it.

    Maja's husband made a big fuss on Twitter the other day about her not being chosen as Serbia's flagbearer at the Olympics. Instead the honour went to the basketball player Sonja Petrović who led Serbia to the gold medal at the European championships last month.

    He said it was only his opinion and he didn't consult her before throwing his tantrum, but I really wish he hadn't done it. The team really doesn't need any outside distractions at the moment.

    I believe Brankica will go to Tokyo if it's in any way possible.

    In other news, Terzić said the player who impressed him the most in VNL and who could be of best benefit for the NT is Jovana Kocić, so we might actually see her at the Olympics instead of Aleksić.

    Dont you think Kocic can take Aleksic's spot or is it not really realistic?

    I think there's a small chance. I guess those matches against Italy will serve as the final filter of some kind. I believe Terzić must be aware that the MB position is looking a bit thin at the moment and that it's crucial that those who are in best shape at the moment get to go. So I wouldn't write off Kocić completely just yet, but she'll have to prove herself.

    Stevanović would be very useful indeed, but we all know that story. Hopefully Rašić will be hungry and motivated and really step up for what are probably the last competitions of her career.

    But it all depends on Brankica. If she can regain her form, Serbia will be fine. If not, it's going to be difficult. The silver lining is that the OH position is looking much better than 5 years ago. Back then, we had Brankica (granted, she was a total beast at the time) and Malešević, who was basically reduced to a second libero, which I'll always insist was a bad decision. Nikolić was useless on court and Buša was only there to make up the numbers. Now all OHs can contribute.

    And it's official, no Stefana in Tokyo ;( Also no Živković.

    Here's the wide roster:

    S: Maja Ognjenović, Slađana Mirković, Ana Jakšić, Rada Perović

    OPP: Tijana Bošković, Ana Bjelica, Sara Carić

    MB: MIlena Rašić, Mina Popović, Maja Aleksić, Jovana Kocić

    OH: Brankica Mihajlović. Bjanka Buša, Jelena Blagojević, Bojana Milenković, Katarina Lazović, Sara Lozo

    L: Silvija Popović, Teodora Pušić, Sanja Đurđević

    IMO the only real question is Milenković vs Lazović. Hopefully the latter. Please.

    Also, Serbia is going to play three friendly games against Italy, but I don't know when.

    It will be a crime if Lazović doesn't go to Tokyo, assuming she's healthy, of course. She's most definitely better than Milenković and the other 3 OH places should be locked (Mihajlović, Buša, Blagojević). Mirosavljević should join the party from next year on.

    Carić isn't physically used to playing to so many intense matches in such short time, so it's not surprising she struggles now. The potential is definitely there, though, but she'll need to get fitter.

    Sofija Medić really sticks out like a sore thumb on this team and I'm not even sure what the point of having her is. She's certainly not the future of NT and there are other younger and promising MBs in our league. The same goes for Delić, she simply doesn't have what it takes and the only reason she's here is that she plays in Crvena Zvezda and is coached by Vladisavljev. Ugh, the nepotism. For all the amazing things he's done and can never get enough credit for, that is going to be one ugly legacy of Terzić once he is gone.

    Speaking of MBs, if Stefana is not ready, I wouldn't leave Kocić totally out of consideration. I mean, she probably won't get to go in the end, but so far she's really rocking it. Keep at it, girl!

    Lozo will forever be B team material and the setters make me wish Živković/Drča would regain her form from before pregnancy and hold on until Paris.

    Kocic is finally showing and going to the place she occupied in the youth categories, let this be a nice start.

    Yeah, she finally lost that "scared rabbit" look she had whenever she was on NT and is now playing with a belief that she belongs there. And from what she's been showing, she certainly does, and I expect her to be on the A team from next year on.

    Sara Carić has also been a big revelation, she was a good prospect a couple of seasons ago but she's had so many health issues that unfortunately stopped her development and she was barely a factor in the Serbian league. TBH, I was surprised she was even called up on this squad, but it's so good to see she's getting back on track, and if she stays healthy and keeps it up, there will certainly be a place for her too.

    And what to say about Lazović, she is the leader of this team and acts like one. IMO she should be a lock for Tokyo, together with Mihajlović, Buša and Blagojević.

    I'm happy Drča is back, God knows Mirković is not enough (to put it mildly) and the other setters are just too young and inexperienced.

    Hopefully Vanja Savić gets a bigger role and gives a good account of herself. I really think she's someone that should be invested in as Bjelica's replacement, whose time is clearly running out.

    Jovana Mirosavljević should be given a bigger role, she's a good all-around OH and should be taking the next step forward. I hope she goes abroad soon.

    I see they're trying really hard to make Hena Kurtagić happen, but I just don't see it yet. She's tall and has a good blocking technique but her spiking is woefully uncoordinated. She's been touted as the next Stefana, but when you compare their respective performances at the same age, it's like night and day. I mean, it's OK, players develop at a different rate, but at this point we definitely should not be carried away too much, she still has a long way to go.

    In other news, Rašić got engaged, which came as a bit of a surprise for me because... I didn't think she was interested in men. Anyway, congrats. Also, that means she'll definitely be skipping the next season because she wants to have a baby. So, given the stage of the career she's in, I wonder if ECh in Belgrade is the last we see her on the volleyball court.

    What's the deal with this serb-china collaboration. Are they big Serbian financial investments in China?

    The other way around, actually. China is basically taking over the country, which is why we have plenty of vaccines at the time most of Europe is struggling to get any.

    I'm not really happy with this special relationship, but what can you do.

    As for Alesya/Olesya thing, in Russian, unstressed "o" is pronounced like "a", which is called vowel reduction (but NOT in Ukrainian, which means Rykhlyuk must be a native Russian speaker, like many Ukrainians are). This is definitely not the standard way to transliterate Cyrillic into Latin, but I guess she prefers this version for some resion.

    TBH, it wouldn't surprise me if she spent the rest of her career in Eczacibasi.

    There was an interview with Terzić and he said they're well covered with Turkish players and are now looking for foreigners. Nobody has signed yet and they're exploring various options, but from the sound of it, it appears the squad will be quite different next season, He hopes there will once again be some Serbian players.

    I m very surprised with this statement. This situation makes it extra weird that why she didn't apply for Turkish citizenship 🤔 with all respect, Serbian passport is not meat better than Turkish passport since they are not an EU country neither. And if she would be eligible to play as a local player, she would be the most wanted opposite among Turkish clubs

    There's something dodgy going on🤔 is her wife from Serbia?

    The difference is that the holders of Serbian passport can enter the EU (and China) without a visa, which I assume is very practical for a volleyball player. Still, as corrupt as Serbia is, one cannot simply apply for a passport and get it fast-tracked without having something to offer in return. And I doubt Vargas would have the amount of money needed to bribe the officials. That's mostly reserved for shady millionaires fleeing their countries trying to protect their wealth and even then it happens very rarely.

    Serbia doesn't recognize same-sex partnerships, so Vargas having a Serbian wife would have no bearing on her getting Serbian citizenship.

    The point is, we have Terzić on record saying Vargas is going to play on Serbian NT and that they've approached the FIVB to get the permission, He wouldn't lie about something like that. So, something must have definitely happened for Vargas to change her mind.

    As for the Brankica matter, I assume as a long time member of the team (and one of Terzić's favourites) she was consulted about the thole thing and that Vargas was joining because she intended to retire in a couple of years and not that Vargas was going to push her out of the team.