Men’s professional volleyball organisation OK Financial Group has appointed former Sunbirds of Suntory, Japan head coach Masashi Ogino (53) as its third head coach.
OK Financial Group announced on the 29th that it has appointed Massa Ogino as its next head coach. Ogino Massa will be the third head coach after Kim Se-jin and Seok Jin-wook, and the first foreign head coach of the OK Financial Group Volleyball Team.안전놀이터
As OK Financial Group celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, the company considered the appointment of a foreign head coach from various perspectives as a sign of returning to its roots and challenging itself again. After conducting several interviews with leading figures, the group decided to appoint Ogino, who has a good understanding of Korean volleyball and is strong in basic volleyball, as the right person.
An official from OK Financial Group said, “We wanted to make a move close to innovation in time for the club’s 10th anniversary in 2023, so we selected candidates with a foreign coach in mind from the beginning. We considered a wide range of candidates from Brazil, France, Russia, Italy, and Japan, and conducted written interviews in advance.” “After looking for someone with a high level of understanding and affection for Korean volleyball, we decided that Coach Ogino was the right person for the job. He is also a coach who can fill the gaps in our current team’s fundamentals and defensive organisation,” said a representative from OK Financial Group.
Indeed, Ogino is an “Asian volleyball powerhouse” who played as a long-time defensive outside hitter from 1988 to 2010. Ogino is regarded as one of the greats of Asian volleyball, having competed in two Olympic Games (1992, 2008) and three World Championships (1990, 1998, 2006).
After retiring from playing in 2010, he began his coaching career with the Sunbirds, leading the team until 2012. In 2017, he was reappointed as Suntory’s head coach and led the team until 2019, when his leadership helped the team return to the top tier.
Ogino is no stranger to Korean volleyball. Having played for the Japanese national team during the rivalry between Korean men’s volleyball and Japanese men’s volleyball, Ogino has a strong understanding of the Korean style of play and performance. Ogino also has a long-standing connection to Korean volleyball, as he continues to interact with the Korean national team players he played against during his playing days.
OK Financial Group Volleyball will return to its roots with Ogino, who played for the Sunbirds for many years, a team that is renowned for its fundamental play.
“I am excited to take on this new challenge with OK Financial Group Volleyball,” said Ogino. I will do my best to help OK Financial Group Volleyball win the championship again. I am familiar with Korean volleyball and have a good understanding of the game,” he said, adding, “I think free communication is the most important aspect of running a team. I will also strengthen the defence, which is the pillar of the team, and build a system that utilises all attacking channels,” he said.
Meanwhile, Ogino arrived in South Korea on the 15th and greeted the players after finalising his contract. After returning to Japan on the 17th, Ogino will complete the necessary procedures such as obtaining a visa and will arrive in Korea at the end of May to lead the team in earnest.