Leeds volleyball prodigies from GORSE Academies Trust called up to represent England in overseas training camps and competitions
Fola Alasade, Emmanuel Oretoye and Joshua Cosgrove from The Farnley Academy and Daniella Tchandeu and Essay Mulubrhan from The Ruth Gorse Academy are now part of the U17 England Cadets Volleyball programme. The programme involves training camps in France and Portugal, as well as tournaments in Italy and competitions in the North European Volleyball Zonal Association.
They were selected from hundreds of junior players nationally and opponents in competitions the programme is part of include Denmark, Finland and Norway. The students competed in trials over various months before selections were made.
Essay Mulubrhan of The Ruth Gorse Academy said: “I was nervous during the warmup, but as the day went on, I didn’t feel out of place, but just kept trying my best. My friends and I from the club (LGVC) were happy we spent so much time on skills and technique because you needed good ball control for most of the trial. It seemed like the hard work paid off.”
Fellow student and England youth international Daniella Tchandeu said: “Looking back, I’m so happy I went to extracurricular volleyball. If I dedicate myself to something, I know now, I can do it. After going through England trials and making new friends from across the country, I have more courage to play and confidence to meet new people. I’m excited to begin and I am happy Fola and I can support each other on our volleyball journey.”
The Ruth Gorse Academy and The Farnley Academy are both part of the GORSE Academies Trust, which considers volleyball to be one of their ‘big three’ sports alongside rowing and karate. Leeds Volleyball Club took up residence at The Ruth Gorse Academy and goes by the name of the Leeds GORSE Volleyball Club.
Elaine Brown, director of volleyball at The GORSE Academies Trust, added: “At GORSE, we are determined to ensure that all students are given the opportunity to try new and, sometimes out of the norm activities, and to find a sport they enjoy, hopefully for life. We are so proud of our students’ success in volleyball and cannot wait to see them represent their country on the international stage.”