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04/04/2018 22:38
Bunge RAVENNA claim home win in #CEVChallengeCupM final stage
2018 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup - Men

Luxembourg, April 4, 2018. Bunge RAVENNA claimed an important victory in the first matchup from the final phase of the #CEVChallengeCupM. The Italians took a 3-1 win over their opponents from Olympiacos PIRAEUS. However, a re-match will define who the winners of the 2018 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup – Men will be, as the away game will take place on April 11.  In this first match, which lasted 131 min., both teams showed a real will to win, as the spectators in Ravenna enjoyed some high-class Volleyball.

Bunge RAVENNA (ITA) vs. Olympiacos PIRAEUS (GRE) 3-1 (26-24, 23-25, 25-20, 25-23)

•    Bunge RAVENNA are playing in the final stage of a European competition after 21 years. Back in 1997, the same club (at that time known as Porto Area) won in Geneva the CEV Cup beating the Turkish club of Netas ISTANBUL. On the other hand,  Olympiacos PIRAEUS have had the opportunity to perform in the final stage of a European competition in more recent times - in 2005 they won in Pireaus the Top Teams Cup, playing against the Dutch side of Ortec ROTTERDAM Nesselande. Again in Piraeus, but in 1992, Ravenna and Olympiacos fought in the Champions Cup final and Messaggero RAVENNA won the title by 3-0.
•    In the first set, both teams showed a very good game. Bunge RAVENNA and Olympiacos PIRAEUS  were closely “following” each other in the score. Thanks to an ace made by Cristian Poglajen, RAVENNA opened the match in their favour. Paul Buchegger from the hosts scored six points (55% of success rate), while Mikko Oivanen from the guests responded with six points (40%) as well.
•    In the second set Olympiacos PIRAEUS rushed to 5-2 and the Greek team managed to keep the advantage for the remainder of the set. Georgios Petreas made a great block and put an end to this part of the match, making the score equal. Special mention for Todor Aleksiev who scored five points in this section of the game.
•    Bunge RAVENNA started slowly in the third set, but thanks to the great cooperation of Buchegger and Nicolas Marechal the team recovered and took the lead (11-9 and then 19-15). Marechal was “on fire” with 75% of success rate in attack. Krasimir Georgiev also helped by scoring four points.
•    Bunge RAVENNA won the fourth set, but the teams were constantly exchanging the lead - Olympiacos PIRAEUS were leading at 4-1, but then Bunge’s players responded at 8-7. The Greeks reacted to edge ahead at 15-11, but RAVENNA wouldn’t let things slip away from their hands (good play by Santiago Orduna at 19-17). The visitors  fought until the very end of this part (20-22), but Paul Buchegger and Enrico Diamantini accepted the challenge and showed their best. Diamantini shone with an ace at 23-22 and Buchegger closed the game cashing the second match point for the Italians.

Fabio Soli, head coach of Bunge RAVENNA: ”This is an important victory – we fought against a great team. Olympiacos PIRAEUS has experienced and physically strong players, but we won even though we did not play very well. The main thing is that there was a great spirit of competition. We have achieved this night only one third of our goal: we expect that the return match will be very tough and we should keep our heads cool, not thinking that we have an advantage. It will be tough, for sure, because the Greeks will be able to count on their great, warm supporters.”

Fernando Munoz Benitez, coach of Olympiacos PIRAEUS : "I knew this match would be tough and seeing what has happened, I was right. Unfortunately, we made too many mistakes and it was difficult for us to find the right rhythm. In the end, the first and fourth sets were the most balanced, but were also the decisive ones. In these moments Bunge RAVENNA showed something more in order to win, and they used their opportunities.”

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News nr. 4 of 36
11/04/2018 09:00:00
Olympiacos and RAVENNA to lock horns again for #CEVChallengeCupM title
21/03/2018 18:36:00
Bunge RAVENNA and Olympiacos PIRAEUS to fight for the CEV Challenge Cup title

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