Who will be the future of the court? 2023-2024 Women’s Player Draft Preview

It has been confirmed that the 2023-2024 Korea Volleyball Federation (KOVO) new player draft will be held in the women’s division on September 10. The fateful day is gradually approaching for the amateur players who have been waiting for this day and sweating a lot, and for the club that will welcome new team members. Who will be the new face of the V-League in the 2023-2024 season?

The 2023 KOVO women’s rookie player draft will be held on September 10th. Prior to the draft, players participating in the women’s draft will hold a tryout at KGC Ginseng Corporation’s Shintanjin Gymnasium from the 8th to the 9th. Tryouts, which started in 2020 due to difficulties in determining the exact skills of players due to the decrease in competitions due to COVID-19, are continuing this year as well.

For a while, the prevailing opinion was that there were no players to select in the women’s division. This was because the number of players who could be used as an instant force had decreased compared to the past. It is true that there are few players who are evaluated as starters for professional teams this year as well. Starting this season, as each team uses Asian quota players, the opportunities for domestic players to enter the court will be much reduced than before. Compared to veteran seniors who have accumulated experience over a long period of time on the professional stage, the range of players who can immediately win and play in competition is narrow, but they are evaluated based on their potential for growth by broadening their horizons and whether they will become competitive as professional players in the near future. If so, there are several prospects to keep an eye on. Expected

first round picks with confidence

This year’s draft is similar to the 2019-2020 season draft. Many clubs coveted Jeong Ho-young, a third-year student at Myeongseong Girls’ High School who was evaluated as the best prospect at the time. To prevent tanking, which intentionally lowers a team’s performance, starting from this year’s draft, the method of giving lottery odds to only the bottom three teams was changed to giving lottery odds to all teams. In the end, KGC Ginseng Corporation, which ranked last in the 2018-2019 season, won the first pick with the highest probability of 35% and captured Ho-young Jeong as they wanted.

The No. 1 player this year is definitely Hanbom High School’s Kim Se-bin (MB, 188cm). She is a former middle blocker and is the second daughter of Kim Cheol-soo, general manager of Korea Electric Power Company, and Kim Nam-sun, a leading striker for Korea-Japan Synthetic Team and national team player during his professional volleyball days. Inheriting her parents’ superior volleyball DNA, she has been consistently in the spotlight since her childhood.안전놀이터

Last year, she was selected for both the U18 and U20 national teams and participated in two Asian Championships. At the Girls U18 Volleyball Championships she was voted Best Middle Blocker. This year, she is a member of the Women’s U19 national team, where she competed at the 2023 International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) World Women’s Youth Volleyball Championship. She is currently the only high school student to be included in the Hangzhou Asian Games preliminary 50-man entry.

She is the main player who led Hanbom High School to 7 wins from last year to this year. As a middle blocker, her tall height is attractive. Her strength is that she can make fast attacks in the center as well as open attacks. She’s also good at blocking. She just suffered an injury to her left thumb this year, which has put her off somewhat from the performance she showed last year. The aftermath of her injury continued until the World Championships.

Nevertheless, several clubs are making efforts to nominate Kim Se-bin, the key player in this year’s draft. During the off-season, the Korea Expressway Corporation designated Lee Go-eun as a compensation player for Park Jeong-ah’s free agency, then returned it to Pepper Savings Bank and made a trade to receive middle blocker Choi Ga-eun and a first-round pick in the rookie draft. Thanks to this, he had two first round picks. As the defending champion, the lowest draw probability of 1% was raised to 36%.

Among this year’s draft applicants, there is no clear middle blocker except for Kim Se-bin. It cannot be denied that he has the most outstanding skills among players his age. However, evaluations of success in the professional world are somewhat mixed. While some say he can be utilized to his full potential immediately upon joining the pro ranks, others say he will still need time to gain some experience. Seven clubs are very interested in the U19 national team players who participated in this World Championship along with Kim Se-bin. This is because they are members of the age group national team that stood out among their peers.

Photo_Seonmyung Girls’ High School Shin Eunji

Among them, Shin Eunji (Seonmyung Girls’ High School 3, OP, 175cm) is a left-handed striker whose strength is serving. He recorded a serve ace in all matches at this World Championship. In particular, he showed off his skills against the United States and Serbia by winning 5 points each with only his serve. He got better at receiving as the year went on. He was exempt from receiving on offense until his sophomore year, but this year he will also participate in receiving. Even at the World Championships, she was often placed on the receiving line instead of Joo-ah Lee (Mokpo Women’s 2, OH, 180cm). There were also frequent plays involving light attacks after participating in receiving. When he was in the back line, he occasionally attempted a right back attack, creating a variety of attack options for the team, but as a striker, he was somewhat short in stature.

Among outside heaters, Ilshin Yeosang Kwak Seon-ok (OH, 178cm) is evaluated as a good talent. She scores highly in the receiving and defensive skills needed at OH. With the U19 national team, she doesn’t have much of a role in the offense due to her high receiving percentage, but for her team, she plays a homemaker role. She is Jeonju Geunyoung Girls’ High School’s Jeon Sumin (OH. 177cm), and her attack is attractive. His strength is breaking through blockers with strong power. On the other hand, as an outside hitter, it is unfortunate that she often misses receiving shots.

Pohang Girls’ High School Park Soo-bin (S, 176cm) is evaluated as having the best skills among her setter positions. Although she did not receive much attention because her team was far from the championship, she was the only setter to experience both competitions, from last year’s U18 Asia Championships to this year’s U19 World Championships. Even though he was not the starting player, he played the role of a firefighter who interrupted the opponent’s flow when he stepped on the court as a substitute. Not only was she quick to find the ball, but she also received high marks for her stable setting stance.

Garam Yoo (Jecheon Girls’ High School, 168cm) and Suji Jeong (Hanbom High School, 165cm) are the most eye-catching among the liberos. In particular, Yoo Garam has experienced all three international competitions, including last year’s U18 Asian Championships, the AVC Cup, and this year’s World Championships. Earlier this year, she suffered an Achilles tendon injury that forced her to focus on rehabilitation instead of competing. Fortunately, thanks to a quick recovery, I participated in the 2023 Naejangsan Mountain Cup and even went to the World Championships. Jeong Soo-ji played as a starting player for the first time this year. He is the leading player in leading Hanbom High School to 7 wins with stable play. Both players received passing grades in defense, but receiving needs to be improved a bit more. 

In addition, there are several players who are not part of the U19 national team but have shown potential in their teams. Seo Chae-hyun (Seonmyung Girls’ High School, 173cm), who played as the starting setter at last year’s Asian Championships, is also evaluated as a decent resource. He is the younger brother of Seo Chae-won of Pepper Savings Bank. Not only does he make quick passes, but he is also good at using fast breaks and back passes. Experts say, “In recent girls’ high school games, fast breaks are almost impossible to find. “Most of them are open attacks, but Seo Chae-hyun tries to use quick attacks,” he said. Hanbom High School Choi Seo-hyun (176cm) and JoongAng Girls’ High School Lee Yun-shin (174cm) are also contenders for rookie draft nomination. Yunshin Lee has consistently had opportunities to compete since his lower grades, showing his skills improving over the years.

Photo_Kang Da-yeon, Seonmyeong Girls’
High School As for the outside heater, Seonmyeong Girls’ High School Da-yeon Kang (182cm) is the tallest among her peers. Her attacking and blocking abilities that utilize her tall height are good. However, her receiving ability, which is essential for her as an outside hitter, is somewhat lacking. On the other hand, although Han Bom Go Joon-hee (170 cm) is short, she is evaluated as stable in receiving. For reference, in previous women’s rookie drafts, outside heaters over 180cm tall were selected in some way.

Jeonju Geunyoung Girls’ High School Seo Ji-hye (174 cm) and Lee Tae-min (177 cm) are also candidates. Together with Jeon Su-min, they formed a triangular formation and brought Jeonju Geunyoung Girls’ High School to the top for the first time in a long time. Seo Ji-hye is responsible for the most receiving on her team. Taemin Lee uses a serve that is reminiscent of Jeongwon Moon of the Korea Expressway Corporation. He is a player who not only has good serve power, but also has a variety of celebrations, raising the mood on the court.

Among the Apogits, Hanbom High School Song A-hyeon (176 cm) and Choi Ho-seon (181 cm) are also likely to be nominated. They all have one thing in common: they are left-handed. He has accumulated a lot of practical experience by playing consistently since his junior year. Song A-hyun played for the Women’s U18 National Team last year, and Choi Ho-sun also experienced the international stage as a member of the 2022 AVC Cup national team. She also increased her availability by participating in receiving, which is what her pro team wants. Choi Ho-seon’s height is an advantage.

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