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22/03/2017 21:25
Belogorie edge Polish champions to shape up derby with Zenit KAZAN in Playoffs 6
2017 CEV Volleyball Champions League - Men

Kedzierzyn-Kozle, Poland, March 22, 2017. Belogorie BELGOROD rallied on Wednesday night to their second 3-1 victory (25-22, 20-25, 26-24, 25-21) in as many matches with Zaksa KEDZIERZYN-KOZLE to secure their spot in the Playoffs 6 of the 2017 CEV Volleyball Champions League – Men and play there arch-rivals Zenit KAZAN.

As many as 2,700 fans came together at Azoty Hall for the much- anticipated matchup starring the Polish national champions and the Russian ‘Lions’. Zaksa started the match much focussed, and the hosts looked determined to avoid the same setback they had suffered a week ago in Belgorod – where they had won the first set at a canter before losing the match in four sets. Dawid Konarski and Sam Deroo chiefly contributed to 8-4 and 16-14 leads for the hosts at the first and second technical time-outs, respectively but Belogorie fought back and the score was all square at 17-all. Maksim Zhigalov and Ian Iereshchenko stepped up their efforts towards the end of the set and a 25-22 win meant Belogorie were only one set away from progressing to the Playoffs 6.

Zaksa responded by taking a comfortable lead in the early stages of the second set and Poland’s reigning national champions displayed an overall solid performance, rallying to a 25-20 win with an outstanding Sam Deroo setting the pace for the home side.

The third set would then decide the eventual winner of this fixture. Rafal Buszek paved the way towards a 5-2 lead for Zaksa but Belogorie responded in style, edging ahead at 10-9 with the help of Zhigalov. Zaksa did not tremble and had a three-point lead at the second technical time-out, before Belogorie stormed back; the Russians had a first set ball – a virtual match ball – at 24-23 following an ace from Zhigalov and by finishing it off at 26-24, they secured their spot in the Playoffs 6. The fourth set was not important anymore, and yet Belogorie did enough to celebrate a 3-1 victory.

Both teams used most of their second lines and even though Zaksa claimed a 13-9 lead, Roman Danilov restored the balance at 14-all and Roman Poroshin eventually secured a 25-21 win to cap off a memorable night for the Russian ‘Lions’.

“I congratulate our opponents but I am sorry we missed such a great opportunity in the third set. We should have won that one but we did not manage to finish it in our favour – and this especially applies to some crucial actions,” said Zaksa head coach Ferdinando De Giorgi. “This eventually turned out to be the main factor in determining the outcome of this match.”

Alexander Kosarev, head coach of Belogorie BELGOROD: “It was a real Volleyball party and it took a lot of effort from my team to win this match; however we showed our class and as I had said before this match, we were not afraid of Zaksa and of their strength.”

Click here for more info including detailed stats of the match

News nr. 6337 of 23547
22/03/2017 21:46:00
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22/03/2017 20:26:00
Zenit KAZAN thrash Knack ROESELARE again to comfortably progress to Playoffs 6
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