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10/09/2015 22:30
Hungary two sets away from European League crown after 3:0 home win
2015 CEV Volleyball European League - Women

Érd, Hungary, September 10, 2015. Hungary women’s national team are only two sets away from claiming the title of the 2015 CEV Volleyball European League. On Thursday night the hosts delivered a superb performance to delight a crowd of 1,700 fans and edge their rivals from Turkey in three straight sets (25-23, 25-23, 25-21) to claim the first round of the finals. The remake will now follow on Sunday, September 13, in Izmir and last year’s gold medal winners Turkey will have to record a 3:0 or 3:1 home victory in order to go for the golden set and try to retain the crown they claimed in 2014 when beating Germany.

Shortly before the start of the match, a small ceremony was organised to pay the right tribute to the members of Hungary’s national team that 40 years ago claimed silver at the European Championship held in Belgrade, then Yugoslavia. Turkey’s Ambassador to Hungary was also among the guests in attendance for this much anticipated match.

The start of the game left no doubt about the intentions of both teams to vie for a much desired gold medal. Turkey got up by only one point at the first technical time-out but Hungary flipped the charts by the second mandatory break, leading by the same narrow margin. 1,700 passionate fans in attendance seemed to inspire the local heroines and Hungary could gain a small cushion which was propelled by the actions of Dora Horvath and Agnes Pallag. However, Turkey continued to fight with all of their hearts and Hungary’s advantage was reduced down to one point at 21:20. At this stage home mentor Jan De Brandt stopped the game and his players responded in the best way as after the break they scored three points in a row. Turkey survived to Hungary’s first set ball but a red card to the visitors finished it all off at 25-23 for the home side.

The same close fight continued also in the second set. Once again it was a real battle and similarly to what had happened in the first set, Turkey set the pace at the first technical time-out, though only by one point (8:7). Turkey edged ahead by two at 14:12 and after Petra Szeles and her teammates briefly levelled the score the visitors got back a two-point margin at the second technical time-out. At 18 all, Edina Dobi stamped a massive block and after another close race Hungary prevailed also in the second set, yet again by the score of 25-23.

The picture of the match did not change in the third set where Hungary and Turkey exchanged the lead back and forth but without being able to claim a comfortable margin. Once more Turkey was 8:7 up at the first technical time-out but shortly after the second mandatory break Hungary had broken away leading by 18:14. At this point, Turkey’s head coach Ismail Yengil asked for a time-out but it did not deliver the effects he was hoping for. Hungary could capitalise on their lead and they brought the set and the match to an end at 25-21 to celebrate an unforgettable home victory.

Renata Sandor and Ezgi Dagdelenler top scored in the match with 17 points apiece for Hungary and Turkey, respectively. Edina Dobi received the award for the best player of a memorable night for Hungary’s Volleyball family.

“We are playing better and better and I think that we prepared very thoroughly for this match, working very hard and this helped us achieve tonight’s victory,” said Hungary’s coach Jan De Brandt.

Ismail Yengil, head coach of Turkey commented: “I would like to congratulate the Hungarian team on their victory. We couldn’t perform well in the decisive moments.”

Click here for further info including detailed stats of the match

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