Sheffield based stars set for the big time

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GREAT Britain men’s volleyball coach Harry Brokking is predicting his Sheffield-based squad will go onto big things after the Olympic Games.

Brokking, who has Olympic experience dating back to his time working with the Dutch squad at Seoul in 1988, says that positive performances will lead his players to bigger clubs on the continent.

Currently, only Mark McGivern (Avignon), plays for what is considered to be a leading side, but Brokking feels that offers will come in for his players if they stand up to be counted at Earls Court.

“This is a big, big platform for the players to show themselves,” he said. “Europe is a very big continent for volleyball and in turn Great Britain. The big nations will not look yet for players from Great Britain but, if some of our players impress against Italy, then next season they will be in Italy. That’s how it works.”

Team GB captain, Ben Pipes, who moved to All Saints school in the city as a 17-year-old to pursue his Olympic dream shares Brokking’s vision for the future.

The 25-year-old already has a century of caps to his name and was a founder member of the squad.

Pipes still says that legacy comes before medals despite the Games looming large.

“It’s a motivation for us all. I was lucky enough to be there at the start, when the meetings and commitment were all about legacy,” he said.

“Now, from this summer, it’s important to stress that this is a start line and not an end one.”