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ITALY: "We want to annoy the big four"

11.06.11, Bolzano - With an average age of 24 the Italian squad may be one of the youngest but they are already a very experienced team. Team captain Prudenziati, for example, can look back on no fewer than three World Championships. The Italians' aim for the 2011 Fistball WCH is primarily to stand their ground against Chile and Argentina. 

Preparations are already in full swing for the Italians. Besides the training camp already held at Easter, training days in Bolzano are also on the programme and the team will then be making its way to Jona (CH) for the international Raiffeisen Obersee Masters and the finishing touches to their preparations. The squad - which currently has 12 players - has four fistballers who are preparing abroad with teams in Austria and Germany instead of in Italy at the moment because of their studies.
It is still uncertain whether captain and setter Simon Prudenziati will be able to take part in the WCH after having to finish the spring season early with a severe elbow injury. Trainer duo Alex Biasion and Jörg Raml want to wait until the tournament in Switzerland at the end of July to announce the final 10-man squad. "We are delighted about the fact that several of our 'young and hungry' players are also making it into the team at the moment and want to make a good impression with a view to the WCH."

Backed by numerous followers and fans, Italy sees the two South American teams Chile and Argentina as its direct opponents. "These are the teams we have to beat for a top-six finish," says Armin Runer, attacker and experienced team stalwart. "We're looking forward to great matches, an excellent atmosphere and hopefully plenty of spectators. It would be good to annoy the big four - Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Brazil - as well, of course, and take a set off them here and there." Runer sees host nation Austria as the clear favourites. "We and our team will certainly be staying for the WCH party at the end so we can celebrate with the future World Champions."

Prudenziati, Tobias (SSV Bozen)
Vonmetz, Thomas (SSV Bozen)
Runer, Armin (SSV Bozen)
Pertinger, Sebastian (SSV Bozen)
Chimetto, Lukas (SSV Bozen)

Prudenziati, Simon (SSV Bozen)
Scartezzini, Christian (SSV Bozen)
Meran, Thomas (SSV Bozen)
Runer, Florian (SSV Bozen)
Obexer, Fabian (SSV Bozen)
Rottensteiner, Florian (SSV Bozen)
Weger, Felix (SSV Bozen)

Biasion, Alexander (Coach)Ramel,
Jörg (Assistant-Coach)
Meran, Georg (Staff)
Pertinger, Joachim (Staff)
Runer, Helmut (Coach for Spikers)

Team Italy