The Asian quota, which will be implemented for the first time this year, is drifting.
The 14 men’s and women’s teams in the V-League decided to introduce an Asian quota as the ransom of native players became burdensome. In fact, the best way to naturally reduce ransom by stimulating domestic players who want to level their strength and settle for the present is to increase the number of foreign players. However, negative public opinion is burdensome. The V-League does not have the courage to go against the fans’ idea that they should protect their own players.
Clubs struggling between reality and fans’ demands chose the Asian Quarter as an alternative. On September 30 last year, at the 19th 1st board of directors of the Korea Volleyball Federation (KOVO), it was decided to conduct both men’s and women’s divisions from 2023. According to this, 10 countries, including four East Asian countries (Japan, Mongolia, Taiwan, and Hong Kong) and six Southeast Asian countries (Thailand, Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Myanmar), are eligible to participate in the Asian Quarter.
Players are selected by lottery with equal odds, with each team having 10 marbles each. Face-to-face selection is the principle, and it was decided to hold a tryout in Jeju Island at the end of April.
The reason Jeju Island was selected was because of the visa. The only region where foreigners can enter without a visa is Jeju Island. You can enter the country for up to 30 days. The annual salary of Asian quarter players selected by the club is $100,000. Tax is borne by the player. Excluding tax, the real wages of the players are about 78,000 dollars (approximately 98 million won). This amount is excluded from the total remuneration of domestic players. Compared to the current ransom of each team’s main players, the cost-effectiveness is high. It is certain that the Asian Quarter will be the best way to solve many problems in the current V-League if only the level of skills that teams want is guaranteed.
KOVO intends to involve many players for the success of the Asian Quarter. There was also a need for that. If the total number of people and skill is not enough to take the players that only one or two teams need, equity becomes an issue. V-League clubs are obsessed with fairness. It doesn’t matter that everyone goes wrong, but I never want to see other clubs do well except for ours. If only a handful of clubs benefit from it, they will suggest delaying the introduction of the Asian quota.
Currently, ahead of the Asian Quarter, the executive directors of each club often gather to discuss various things. Again, the clubs asked KOVO to set the number of players so that they could select at least two players per team. Some clubs say there is no need to do an Asian quota if at least 14 players cannot participate. As a result of confirming the players who expressed their intention to participate through the agent, it seems that more than 14 men will participate. There are many Mongolian players who are already active in amateur volleyball, so the tryout is not a problem. The problem is the female part. It is not easy to fill the staff.
According to the current Asian Quarter tryout schedule announced by KOVO, applicants will be accepted from February 20th to March 21st. It is important how many players receive applications in about a month. Tryouts will be held between April 25 and 27 for men and between April 29 and May 1 for women.
In the midst of this, an unexpected problem arose.
The first variable is the South East Asian game. It is a comprehensive competition held biennially among Southeast Asian countries. The 2023 SEA Games will be held in Phnom Penh, Cambodia from May 5-17. It is an important multi-sport event that Southeast Asian countries take pride in. Among many sports, women’s volleyball is Thailand, and men’s volleyball is Indonesia’s power. Thailand, which wants to win the tournament without fail,스포츠토토 plans to start full-scale training by convening its representative players as soon as their season is over. Players playing in overseas leagues are no exception. In Indonesia, from March when the league ends, all men’s national players in their country’s league will begin convocation training.
The situation is similar in the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia and Myanmar. Normally, two weeks before the tournament, the national team is convened and begins training. In this case, players representing six Southeast Asian countries have no way to participate even if they want to challenge the Asian quota. To make matters worse, the Asian Club Championship is also held around the same time. The Club Championship, in which the winning teams from the women’s Asian leagues participate, will be held in Vinh Phuc, Vietnam from April 25 to May 2. KOVO also tried to have a V-League team participate in this competition. It was to enhance competitiveness on the international stage. Several teams were asked if they would like to participate. But everyone waved their hands. Only the men’s Korean Air team plans to participate in the tournament to be held in Manama, Bahrain, from May 14 to 21. A Taiwanese team participates in Vietnam’s women’s tournament. Needless to say, the team’s main setter, Elaine Rao, is the player that draws the most attention in this tryout along with Thai national team’s Phonpun.
Unlike the striker, if the setter, a special position, does not come to the tryout site, there is no way to determine the exact skill. As in the past, it is possible to measure skills through non-face-to-face video, but V-League coaches do not like this plan. An annual salary of less than 100 million won also causes players to postpone their participation. Currently, Japan is the only country that implements QWERTY in Asia. Like it or not, the V-League has to compete with Japan. Japan, which established the Asian quota earlier than Korea, has an advantage in many ways as a starter. Some tall players in the Philippines and Vietnam want Japanese teams that pay more than the V-League. Besides, Japan is a free agency system. There are not as many players as expected to apply for the Asian Quarter Tryout, which pays less money and has to take tests that may fail.
A tall striker of Vietnamese nationality, wanted by a club suffering from inferiority in height, has already signed a contract with the Japanese team for $120,000. Yaya Santiago, who took the Japanese naturalization test as a Filipino citizen, is also negotiating a transfer from Ageo, Saitama, to another team in the Japanese V-League. Right now, Japanese V-League teams are signing Asian quota players between $100,000 and $180,000. After they sign up first, the tall, receiveable outside hitter that V-League teams want is nowhere to be found. It is difficult to even fill the minimum number of 14 people. Not just this year, but in the future as well. For the Asian quota to be successful, players’ ransom must be adjusted to a level that competes with Japan.
First of all, the fire that fell on the instep is a tryout conducted in Jeju Island. If the women’s team can’t fill the 14 players and the players each club wants to see in person can’t come, they have to find another way. There are ways to change the schedule, conduct non-face-to-face, or give up the tryout separately for the women’s division and make a choice after each club identifies the players’ skills. Realistically, the best way is for coaches to fly to Cambodia and Vietnam to see the players in person. If you don’t like that method, it’s better to switch to free agency. This way, depending on the club’s ability, you can find the player you want in any way. This plan is what KOVO’s working-level staff also want.
KOVO has a lot of work to do as soon as the season ends. From April to May, things to do such as public announcement and recruitment of free agent (FA) players, tryouts for foreign players, and workshops held by KOVO every year continue. Due to the recent earthquakes in Turkey and Syria, the tryouts for foreign players scheduled to be held in Istanbul in May also became a variable. You may have to move to another candidate location. It’s easy to say, but there are many miscellaneous things to do, such as securing stadiums, lodging, and air tickets. In the midst of this, we also have to do something new called the Asian Quarter Tryout. As a practitioner, it is inevitably burdensome.
On the other hand, other voices are heard. Some clubs want free agency, but they insist that KOVO try out. It is the side that opposes that KOVO is trying to control everything without giving the club autonomy. It is also the club’s ability to obtain information on various players for selection, but I think that ignoring this and only insisting on the agreement of all clubs takes away the club’s opportunity to compete.
At this point, I don’t know which one is correct. However, if the Asian Quarter does not go ahead as planned, ruptures can come out at any time. The Asian Quarter has yet to come up with concrete action plans. Until the specifics pass the board, we’ll have to keep an eye on progress.