"It's like a David and Goliath match"
Taking on the other teams in the Pacific Games men's volleyball competition was a "David versus Goliath" experience for the Federated States of Micronesia (F.S.M.) men's volleyball team.
But the F.S.M. men's volleyball coach, Anthony Bulauy, told the Samoa Observer that it is what it is and his team did their best, despite the tough competition and against teams with players who were physically bigger.
“It was very tough competition, compared to where we used to play, but the main difference is the players are very big and we are not tall like other countries' players,” he said.
Bulauy described his team's pool matches as akin to the Biblical story of David and Goliath.
“It's like David and Goliath match so it's really hard."
The F.S.M. men played against New Caledonia, Tahiti and Solomon Islands in their pool and lost two matches and won one. They lost to New Caledonia (3-0) and Tahiti (3-0) but pulled one back against the Solomon Islands to win 3-2.
The men's volleyball team captain, Thorn Aritos, said his players struggled in their pool games and there is also an issue of trust amongst the playing group.
“We have been struggling with our pool games, we have also been struggling with our team in trusting each other,” he said.
The team's first two matches against New Caledonia and Tahiti were challenging, but Aritos said they did not help themselves too by not communicating with each other and lacking passing skills.
“Our first two games we were struggling and we lack communication with each other and our passing, well I did not know what happen to our team because soon as we got here, I don't know what happened,” he said.
Despite the team's challenges, Aritos said they enjoyed the hospitality during the Games and the local people were very friendly, which made a big impression on them as they had never been to Samoa before.
“It's everyone's first time in Samoa and they love the experience here in Samoa,” he said.
“This is our first time here to visit Samoa, its has been a great experience for us, mostly after seeing the local style as we also do it back in our home island."