The Australian Volleyroos have arrived in Finland hoping to build on the promising start the new-look team made on the opening weekend of the FIVB World League in Slovakia last weekend.
Coach Mark Lebedew is hoping his time will play better for longer this weekend, after finishing the first weekend with one win and two losses.
After dealing with several injuries ahead of last weekend, the side arrived in Helsinki in good shape.
“Physically the team pulled up well,” Lebedew said.
“We had a 15-hour travel day on Monday that was tough, but now we are back into the swing.”
Tonight the Volleyroos take on Asian rivals China, who had two wins and a loss last weekend, before battling Slovakia for the second time in less than a week on Friday.
Slovakia is one of the only teams in Group Two to remain undefeated after the opening three matches. On Saturday night Australia will take on hosts Finland, who are yet to win a match in World League 2017.
“The expectations for the weekend are to continue to improve from day to day,” Lebedew said.
“We are happy overall with the performances, but other teams will have seen us play and will be better prepared.
Lebedew is in his first major international competition since taking over as head coach of the Volleyroos late last year, and is happy with the performance of the team he has moulded together in sometimes challenging circumsatnces.
“I learnt we have a great capacity to fight and the ability to play at a high level for some period of time, but we lack a little consistency,” he said.
“For this weekend, we want to play better for longer.”
Australia takes on China at 11pm Thursday night, AEST.