Maratha Warriors, led by India skipper and ace blocker G Pradeep, are confident of a good show in the inaugural six-team Indian Volleyball League that commences on May 29 in Bangalore.
“We have three senior players who took part in the last Asian Games in China (Guangzhou). We have a good team and we are capable of winning the title,” said the 6-foot, 8-inch Pradeep at a media conference here.
Along with Pradeep, from Customs, are his Asian Games team-mates Guruchand Singh, attacker, and setter Balwinder Singh, all members of the bronze winning Indian squad in the 2010 Asia Cup.
The team, coached by national women’s coach at the Guangzhou Games, D R Jadhav, has been promised a bonus of Rs 11 lakh if they go on to win the title by team owners Prachin Group from Panvel.
The average age of the players is 23 and average height is 1.94 m, chief coach Jadhav said.
The owners have also decided to have a junior squad as a feeder to the senior team going forward.
The IVL is to be held in four centres -- Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad and Yaham (Puducherry) -- in the first season with Chennai Spikers, Hyderabad Chargers, Karnataka Bulls, Kerala Killers and Yanam Tigers being the other outfits apart from Warriors.
The total prize money is Rs 22.5 lakh and the total budgeted expenditure for the event is Rs 1.5 crore.
The Bangalore leg would conclude on June 2 to be followed by the Chennai (June 4-8) and Yanam (June 12-16) legs. The final leg at Hyderabad would be held from June 20-24.
Each match would be best of five sets and each squad would have 12 players.