National team of Bulgaria conceded first loss in the WCH losing dramatically to the team of Canada after tiebreak. In other games China and Russia get 3 points.
Bulgaria: Zhekov (4), Aleksiev (4), Yosifov (9), Sokolov (22), Penchev (13), Todorov (10), Salparov (L) and Skrimov (8), Milushev (2), Dimitrov, Gradinarov
Canada: Sanders, Perrin (18), Verhoeff (1), Schmitt (22), Hoag (17), Duff (9), Lewis (L) and Soonias, Schneider (2), Winters, Simac (8)
The match started very badly for the guys around head coach Plamen Konstantinov, as Canada’s team took the leadership in the first set by 9:2. Todor Skrimov made the difference in this set while appearing and making some aces in a row, so the Bulgarians turned the result in their favor and eventually closed by 25:17.
Anyway, Bulgaria lost the rhythm in the second set and Canada took the opportunity to equalize the sets’ result 1-1 by 25-17..
After 10 minutes pause Bulgaria seemed to have taken a bit of a rest and stayed better on the volleyball field in the third set. The Lions won this part of the match (25:20) and were only a set away from the final victory.
The drama for the Bulgarians came in the fourth set. The Lions led in the result by 23:20, but on the other hand the Canadian players showed a strong will and great desire. Gavin Schmitt from Canada showed some excellent play on block vs. Tsvetan Sokolov. Canada led by 24:23 and eventually closed by 26:24.
In the fifth set it seemed that the Bulgarians went mentally down and couldn’t find answers to the Canadian’s actions on the field. Without any serious problems Canada closed the set 15-8.
Mexico: P.Rangel (4), Guerra (18), Cordova (4), Vargas (15), Quinones (5), Aguilera (8), J. Rangel (L) and Meyer (2), Barajas, Herrera (1)
China: S.Jiao, W.J.Zhong (3), C.L.Liang (3), Y.Zhi (30), J.J.Cui (7), X.Geng (13), Q.Ren (L) and Z.C.Kou, J.T.Xu, R.M.Li, D.S.Ji (9), F.W.Kong (L)
Mexicans were better from the first whistle. Good performance by Samuel Cordova and Jorge Quinones gave Mexicans significant advantage (16-11). Chinese team struggled in reception and spiking what gave set for Mexicans (25-20).
In second set Chinese team still had problems (8-4), but good performance by opposite Yuan Zhi helped them playing point by point (11-10). Perfect blocking performance and sluggishness on Mexican side gave Chinese team bigger advantage what was enough to get a set (16-21, 19-25).
Last two sets had similar running – quite equal game until second technical time outs. In the ends of set Chinese team got calm, read game on the net and spiked smarter what was a key for win (20-25, 20-25).
Egypt: Abdalla (3), Saleh (5), Mamdouh (1), Abdelhay (10), Badawy (5), Abd Elhalim (6), Moawad (L) and Abdelkader, Elkotb (3), Thakil (2)
Russia: Grankin (2), Ilinykh (13), Muserskiy (8), Pavlov (11), Spiridonov (6), Apalikov (9), Ermakov (L) and Volvich
Last game in Sopot watched many spectators which supported Egypt. The battle was tight only in first set. Game was led point by point until 20 points, then Egypt made few crucial mistakes.
Second and third set was like the same story. Quick 4 point advantage by Sborna, struggling by Egyptians and good performance by Russian leader – outside hitter Dmitriy Ilinykh. Strong serves by Russia killed Egyptian reception and made comfort in block positioning. Match was ended by serve error on Egyptian side.
Author of Bulgaria-Canada – Summary – Victoria Georgieva
Photo and infographics: FIVB