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20/07/2017 14:37
Volleyball festival ‘connects’ 300 kids with star players of Lokomotiv
News from the clubs

Novosibirsk, Russia, July 20, 2017. When you say that Volleyball connects people, this is really true! On Wednesday, July 19 as many as 300 young kids attended a sports festival held in Novosibirsk where they could spend time with many of the star players from the local team of Lokomotiv, such as Nikolay Pavlov, Lukas Divis, Ivan Lukyanenko, Valentin Golubev, Artem Smolyar, Alexey Rodichev – with coach Evgeny Mitkov and statistician Ivan Pukh in attendance as well. The special guest of the event was Mrs Yuliya Bragina, the Deputy Head of the Department for Social Development at the Russian Railways.

The programme started with Pavlov leading a warm-up with the kids as all other players acted as cheerleaders. The children had a lot of fun while trying to repeat the movements shown by the captain of Lokomotiv. The dancers from the ‘Drive’ ballet school and the official mascot Elk joined in as well.

After that, it was time for a so-called Volleyball relay consisting of four stages. The kids showed impressive skills and this generated a lot of cheers and enthusiasm among those in attendance.

Next was a Volleyball match between two teams named ‘Loko’ and ‘Motiv’, each one featuring three players from the roster of Lokomotiv NOVOSIBIRSK; Pavlov, Divis and Lukyanenko played for ‘Loko’ as Smolyar, Rodichev and Golubev starred for the side of ‘Motiv’. Mitkov and Pukh were the respective coaches as Russia’s honoured coach Vladimir Barabanov acted as referee. It was a close battle with ‘Loko’ eventually taking the victory 15-13, 15-12 as the sets were played up to 15 points.

However, it was not about winning or losing, but rather about participating and many funny contests were organised for the fans in the breaks as well. The event finished with a solemn medal ceremony and after that all kids had the opportunity to take a picture with their favourite player and get his autograph.

“This was a terrific experience,” Nikolay Pavlov commented. “I once had the opportunity to lead a clinic with 30 kids, but this time we had 300! I saw that the kids tried to do everything in the best way. This festival turned out to be a very good action since the children are interested in exchanging views with professional players. It’s always pleasant to promote our sport and a responsibility at the same time.”

“It was a great event,” Valentin Golubev said. “I think the kids liked everything they did, since this was some kind of unusual entertainment for them and for us too. We are happy that we could talk to them, teach them something and provide them with a joy to remember.”

“It was a great show! Our task was to show that Volleyball is a great sport and I think many of these kids will have a future in the game. I would be happy to know that someone has become more interested in Volleyball after today’s experience,” Lukas Divis concluded.

Click here for more pictures from the event

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