Co-hosts Italy and Bulgaria have won their opening day matches in straight sets against Japan and Finland respectively. Now, let’s look at what happened during the games in Day Two (September 12, 2018) of the FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship 2018.
France defeats China (3-0; 25-20, 25-21, 25-17)
The French national volleyball team had a perfect start to their 2018 FIVB Men’s World Championship campaign when they defeated China in straight sets. Opposite spiker Stephen Boyer dominated the opposition with 23 points (17 spikes, three blocks, three service aces) while wing spiker Kevin Tillie contributed ten. Meanwhile, opposite spiker Chuan Jiang paced China with ten markers while middle blocker Longhai Chen tallied nine. The Roosters dominated the service ace department, 8-1, and scoring spikes, 43-33.
Cameroon edges Tunisia (3-0; 25-20, 28-26, 25-21)
It may not have been an easy task but Cameroon defeated their African rivals in three sets. Opposite spiker David Patrick Feughouo led the Cameroonians with 22 points while wing spiker Nathan Wounembaina had 15. For Tunisia, opposite spiker Hamza Nagga also had 22 while wing spiker Mohamed Ali Ben Othmen Miladi scored nine. The Blaise Mayam-coached Cameroon squad had a field day on defense as they dominated the kill block battle, 11-8. They also had 24 excellent digs as compared to only ten for Tunisia.
Canada bests Netherlands (25-15, 25-23, 25-18)
Team Canada got off to a good start after defeating the Netherlands in straight sets. Former NORCECA Championship Most Valuable Player and wing spiker Nicholas Hoag led the Canadians with 12 points (seven spikes, one block, four aces) and opposite Sharone Vernon-Evans supported him with ten. For the Dutch, opposite spiker Nimer Abdel-Aziz led with 13 points while Thijs Ter Horst added nine. The Canadians outclassed the Dutch in all attack points: spikes (42-32), blocks (10-6), and service aces (8-2). This is Canada’s first even win against the Netherlands in the FIVB Men’s World Championship.
Iran pummels Puerto Rico (3-0; 25-19, 25-14, 25-18)
The Iran volleyball team made quick work of their Puerto Rican counterparts as they won in three sets. Middle blocker Seyed Mohammad Mousavi Eraghi led the Iranians with 11 points while opposite spiker Amir Ghafour had ten. Iran had a massive advantage in successful spikes (45-28) and also won the in blocks (5-2) and serves (6-2). They also had 24 excellent digs as compared to Puerto Rico’s 15. Maurice Torres led Puerto Rico with 11 points while Eddie Rivera had eight.
Slovenia dominates Dominican Republic (3-1; 22-25, 25-13, 25-13, 25-17)
After dropping the first set, Slovenia roared back to dominate sets two to four. Wing spiker Tine Urnaut led all scorers with 18 points while Mitja Gasparini almost matched Urnaut’s output with 17. After a shaky first set, the team of coach Slobodan Kovac dominated the game by allowing the Dominican Republic to only 14.33 points per set. Slovenia had a whopping 14-1 advantage in service aces. Excellent receptions (25-11) and excellent sets (34-11) are no contest in favor of Slovenia as well. Henry Antonio Lopez Capellan led the Dominican Republic with 12 attack points.
Russia beats Australia (3-0; 25-21, 25-20, 25-16)
Australia tried its best to put up a good fight but Russia is just too good in dominating a game that oddly did not have any excellent sets. Opposite spiker Maxim Mikhaylov powered the Russians with 17 points while Dmitriy Muserskiy seconded with 11 markers. Paul Carroll led Australia with 13 points while Samuel Walker was in support with nine.
Brazil wins over Egypt (3-0; 25-17, 25-22, 25-20)
The world’s top-ranked team had a quick outing against Egypt. The 25 total errors that the Egyptians committed as compared to Brazil’s 13 certainly gave the squad of Renan Dal Zotto the boost to get the victory. Wallace De Souza and Douglas Souza both had 12 points for the Brazilians. On the other hand, Ahmed Abdelhay and Abd Elhalim Mohamed Abou had 13 and nine points for the Egyptians respectively.
Poland repels Cuba (3-1; 25-18, 25-19, 21-25, 25-14)
The defending world champions had a bit of a hiccup in the third set before clinching the game in the fourth. The inexperience of the Cuban squad showed in the first two sets but they were able to salvage the succeeding set courtesy of service aces by Yohan Leon and Jesus Herrera. Arthur Szalpuk led the Poles in scoring with 20 while Bartosz Kurek had 17. For the Cubans, Javier Octavio Concepcion Rojas led the way with 12 and Marion Yang Herrera got 11.
Belgium conquers Argentina (3-1; 25-19, 25-19, 22-25, 25-19)
The Belgian national team benefited from 27 Argentine errors and 15 kill blocks to win their FIVB Men’s World Championship Opening Day match. Captain Sam Deroo led Belgium with 21 points (19 off spikes) while Bram Van Den Dries had 17 (13 spikes, four blocks). Meanwhile, Facundo Conte is Argentina’s top scorer with 13 while Lisandro Zanotti followed with 10. Despite the loss, the Argentinians had a better defensive game in terms of excellent digs (18-9) and excellent receptions (31-23).
USA survives against Serbia (3-2; 15-25, 25-14, 21-25, 25-20, 15-10)
In the only match that went the distance, the United States struggled to overpower a talented Serbia team. However, they survived the match courtesy of Aaron Russell’s 20 points and captain Matt Anderson’s 19. The Serbians were led by outside spiker Uros Kovacevic who also had 19 and was supported by opposite spiker Aleksandar Atanasijevic with 14. The Americans were staring at a 2-1 set disadvantage coming into set four but were able to edge a gritty Serbian team in this thrilling match.