Great Britain's newest recruit Savanah Leaf admits she felt guilty taking the Olympic place of a more established athlete just over two months after joining the programme.
The Greenwich-born 18-year-old moved to California a decade ago but returned home in a bid to make the London 2012 team and has been rewarded with a rapid ascent to make the final cut.
Leaf was anxious about the reaction her late arrival would have on a group who have struggled to fund themselves for several years.
However, her fears proved unfounded and believes she has proved herself with selection by coach Audrey Cooper for the final 12 for next month's Games.
"I did feel guilty at the beginning," admitted the teenager.
"I felt awkward I was making it over some other people but others assured me I was fighting as hard as everyone else.
"I did not realistically think I would make it - not because of my own talent but just because the team was so close together.
"It is hard to come into a team which is so well developed over the last five years and think you can make it.
"It is almost family so I had to work my way into that and even if I was the best player on the team if I didn't fit in I wasn't going to make it."
Leaf was immediately accepted into the group, who through their own personal trials and tribulations understood her Olympic dream.
"Everyone has had a different journey and everyone respects that," added the 18-year-old, who lived in Vauxhall until her family moved to California when she was eight.
"I only came in on April 20 but I've been working towards this since I was 11.
"I think everyone knows that and has respected that and been open to me being on the team.
"People who may have been cut before doesn't mean they were worse players, it was just they were not needed or what Audrey wanted."
While Leaf is beginning her volleyball career, Great Britain's debut in the sport at the Olympics will be a swansong for Jason Haldane.
The Canadian-born player, who has a British father, switched allegiance in 2008 and will make his Games bow four days after his 41st birthday.
"It has been stressful for the last three months because realistically I've been working for the last 20 years to reach this point," said Haldane, who is currently 11 years more senior than the oldest of his team-mates.
"It is a relief beyond words and I am just honoured to be competing for GB now and to perform for the country.
"After 2004 I said to myself 'I am getting older now and I realistically I won't have an opportunity to do it' but when the chance came up for London 2012 it was a rebirth of the Olympic dream.
"You need to be physically 100 per cent to play this at a higher level: the top teams are jumping higher and hitting harder than ever before so it takes a lot to be there.
"Age is just a number. Over the last 10 years advancements have gone further in the training techniques as has the ability to stay fitter for longer.
"I've worked hard on that and I don't feel 40. I don't feel like I am that old, I still feel young at heart."
Team GB chef de mission Andy Hunt paid tribute to the huge strides made in the development of the sport and the dedication of the athletes.
"It has been an incredible feat and achievement as the British Volleyball Association was only formed six years ago and it is great it has come to fruition," he said.
"It has been a tough and difficult journey for the athletes, coaches and governing body to get to this point but through that adversity and amazing determination they will go to the Olympic Games."