Junior World Championships quarterfinalist have been emerged. It is forgone that Serbia will not repeat its success from 2011, when stood on the lowest step of the podium. The new growing star, Luigi Randazzo, took away all hopes of Serbia guiding his azure Italy to the tie-break win. Besides “Azzurri”, quarterfinal tickets was booked by Iran, India, Brazil, Argentina, Russia, France, and Turkey.
Junior World Championships Round of 16
Iran – Egypt 3 – 1 (25-21, 25-20, 25-11)
Top Scorers: Javad Hosseinabadi 11, Mohammad Fallah 9, Amirail Mohammadfathali 8; Mohamed Masoud 8, Islam Abdelkader 8, Mostafa Abdelrahman 7
The Asian team took 74 minutes to seal their superiority over the North African side who now have to make their way to Izmir and fight for the ninth place.
Successful performance by Islam Abdelkader in offence gave the initial advantage to Egypt as they piled up an 8-4 lead by the first technical time-out. But then the Egyptians started making too many mistakes and Iran equalised at 10-10 to gradually take control of the scoreboard and claim the first set by 25-21.
The second set started out as a closely contested affair, but Egypt continued to commit excessive errors and allowed Iran to break away again and finish it off at 25-20.
In set three the Iranians stepped up their blocking efforts, especially those from Amirali Mohammadfathali, to sweep their opponents by the impressive 25-11 and claim the victory.
USA – Brazil 1 – 3 (22-25, 25-23, 18-25, 22-25)
Top Scorers: Benjamin Patch 19, Thomas Jaeschke 13, Driss Guessous 11; Alan Souza 31, Henrique Batagim 12, Flavio Gualberto 12
Brazil changed their strategy and used the floating tactical service to make a pressure upon USA players beside making a wide blocking dominance of 11-4 and also 6-2 in ace services which played a great role in the match.
With Souza‘s fantastic performance in the first set, Brazil concluded the set after a big fight in the last few points as he sent his strong hits not only from position 2 but also from other net positions. After the set went close till the second technical timeout, Souza made the difference with his spikes and Brazil was ahead 25-22. In the second set USA improved their reception and backline defence and also made stated their combinations where the setter Matthew West used his skilful settings to deceive Brazil blockers. USA maintained their lead throughout most of the set. Although Brazil improved their blocking activity, but USA succeeded to make the proper action using their opposite Benjamin Patch who succeeded to score the set point 25-23.
With Brazil developing more their blocking activity and USA losing some concentrations it was easy for them to win both the third and fourth sets to win the match 3-1.
Argentina – China 3 – 1 (25-19, 25-23, 23-25, 29-27)
Top Scorers: Pablo Koukartsev 25, Gonzalo Quiroga 23, Joaquin Layus 10; Tingwe Yan 15, Zhen Qin 12, Kunyu Du 11
Argentina were able to break away between the two technical time-outs of the first set against China. Their three aces and Gonzalo Quiroga’s great overall performance helped the South Americans win the set by 25-19.
In the second set Fabian Muraco’s team had to come from behind as the Chinese greatly improved their spiking efforts and took the lead by a wide margin. Quiroga continued to be extremely valuable for his team and scored another 9 points for the eventual 25-23 in favour of Argentina.
In set three China improved their attacking and blocking even further and despite some productive spiking from Argentina’s Pablo Koukartsev were able to maintain a lead and reduce the lag after 25-23.
The fourth set was by far the most interesting one. China set out on a quest for the tie-breaker and took the lead through the most part of the set. Argentina caught up to prompt a dramatic ending. After 23-24 they saved three set points for China to eventually overcome the strong opponent and settle for a 29-27 final score.
Serbia – Italy 2 – 3 (25-21, 19-25, 21-25, 30-28, 5-15)
Top Scorers: Uros Kovacevic 19, Drazen Luburic 10, Milan Katic 10; Luigi Randazzo 28, Ferdinando Delle Volpe 20, Luca Borgogno 11
Serbia started the match in their utmost performance as they started with a wide lead using the mistakes in reception committed by the Italian team. Serbia’s big gun Uros Kovacevic hammered the Italians with his spikes to allow them to have a comfortable point deficit till they won the set 25-21.
Italia came back aggressively starting from the second set as their main improvement was in reception and blocking as they succeeded to overwhelm the net action. Italy’s setter Pierpaolo Partenio made a lot of development in the general attacking power for his team through the skills of his opposite Luigi Randazzo to attack the Serbian team from all the net positions beside outside hitter Ferdinando Della Volpe who also helped his team to draw 1-1 before they led again in the third set using the disturbed reception from the Serbian team. Randazzo was amazing in scoring the crucial points allowing his team to win the third set 25-21.
The fourth set was the most exciting as Italy maintain their leading throughout the set with their proper spike and floating services. The Italian blocker specially captain Edoardo Picco did a great role till Italy had the match point at 24-22.
Serbia fought bravely using their attacker Kovacevic and the brilliant performance of the setter Aleksa Brdjovic to come back and save 5 match points in the most exciting part of the match to win the set 30-28 and extend the match to tiebreak.
It was strange that the motivated Serbian team after winning the crucial fourth set to come down 0-9 in the tiebreak after bad reception to the floating Italian service. Italian team motivations increased and they succeeded to win the set widely 15-5 and the match 3-2
Among other main causes for the win, the brilliant performance of the Italian opposite Luigi Randazzo comes as the main factor as he was the match scorer with 28 points including 5 impressive dying blocks and 5 ace services. He was followed by the emerging outside hitter Ferdinando Della Volpe who scored 20 points.
From the Serbian side Uros Kovacevic led the scorers with 19 points.
India – Japan 3 – 0 (25-18, 25-23, 25-20)
Top Scorers: Kamur Sohan 13, Kamur Deepesh 11, Anup D’Costa 10; Yuki Ishikawa 11, Tayuka Takahashi 8, Naoya Takano 5
India played much better throughout the first set and cruised to a 25-18 win with Kumar Sohan’s spectacular back-row hit for the last point.
In the second set the Indians started making too many mistakes while the Japanese improved their blocking to control the scoreboard through the 20th point. In the conclusive moments, however, coach T.C. Jothish’s players managed to stay more concentrated and turned things around to close the set at 25-23.
The Indians were once again in charge of the situation during the third set as their tremendous blocking efforts helped them overpower the opponent. It was Kumar Yashvanth’s successful block that shaped up the final 25-20 and prompted an Indian party on the court.
Russia – Tunisia 3 – 0 (25-23, 25-15, 25-21)
Top Scorers: Victor Poletaev 16, Egor Feoktistov 12, Ivan Demakov 7; Adam Oueslati 10, Malek Chekri 8
Tunisia started the match with high motivations and thus they led constantly 8-5 and 16-12 at the TTOs due to their service and attacking strategy specially through the opposite spiker Oueslati. When Tunisia was ahead 22-18, the Russian team started to put pressure through the blockers and also the spike service to score 7 points against only one for the Tunisians in their way to win the set 25-23.
Tunisian performance dropped acutely, while the Russian team improved in all skills making over a second set win widely 25-15.
Although the Russian team increased their attacking activity in the third set, but the Tunisian team reacted positively improving their blocks and defence to maintain near, till Russia won the set 25-21 and the match in straight sets.
Turkey – Mexico 3 – 0 (25-14, 25-15, 25-18)
Top Scorers: BurakGungor 12, Gokhan Gokgoz 11, Metin Toy 10; Roberto Rincon 15, Jose Martinez 5, Irving Gonzalez 4
The home heroes pleased their fans on the stands at Baskent Volleyball Hall with a speedy victory that will allow them to stay in their capital through the rest of the tournament and compete among the top eight teams.
Captain Baturalp Burak Gungor led his Turkish team to a fast 25-14 in the first set. As many as five aces helped the home side maintain their domination through the second set and win it by 25-15.
The Mexicans raised their heads in the first half of the third set, but between the two technical time-outs Turkey once again established control to rush to a final 25-18 in the set and seal their spot in the quarterfinals.
France – Canada 3 – 2 (22-25, 25-21, 25-15, 23-25, 15-10)
Top Scorers: Trevor Clevenot 20, Thibaul Rossard 18, Julien Winkelmuller 11; Dany Demyanenko 14, Robert Gunter, Brendan Barnes 11
With two hours of fighting between the two opponents, the match was going here and their till the French players came with all goods in the tiebreak to win the tough match and qualify for the quarterfinals in Ankara, while Canada will stay in Izmir to play for classification matches 9 to 16.
Canada took the match seriously since the beginning of the first set as they were arranged in reception and defence and use the service properly to stop the French attackers. Left- handed opposite spiker Bradley Gunter did well from positions 2 and allowed Canada to come ahead, while middle blocker Jimenez Demyanenko made also good action offensively and defensively and thus Canada won the set 25-22.
France showed they real team work starting from the second set they were more coordinated in attacks through the outside Trevor Clevenot and Thibault Rossard. French coach also substituted main middle blocker Gael Tranchot and fielded Kevin Rodriguez to improve the blocking and succeeded to lead throughout the second set till they won 25-21.
Again France was motivated to continue the same rhythm where they dominated the match through the service which put Canada team under pressure till they won widely 25-15 in the third set.
Canada team tried save the match as they came back strongly in the fourth set and started to use the quick attacks through the middle of the net to penetrate the French blockers. Canada coach also make some substitutions to refresh the team where he succeeded to come back and advance till they won the set 25-23 to extend the match to tiebreak.
France team played their best in the tiebreak using the spike service of Thibault to lead 4-1 before they turned court at 8-4. It was easy for the French team to continue the same rhythm although some resistance from Canadian team and win 15-10.
The Growing Star Profile
Name: Luigi Randazzo
Birth date: 30.04.1994
Height: 199 cm
Weight 96 kg
Spike reach: 353 cm
Block reach: 325 cm
Actual Club: Tonno Vibo Valentia