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Eurovolley Pool C: Russia top Pool C by beating Slovenia in front of 11,000 fans in Ljubljana, Finland and Turkey at 1/8 finals after a thrilling tie break.

The defending champions Russia secured a top spot in Pool C (Ljubljana, Slovenia) of the 2019 CEV European Volleyball Championship. The battle for the top position in Pool C is over as Russia beat the home side of Slovenia making silent about 11,000 fans: 3-0 (25:21, 25:21, 25:21). Just a couple of hours before the match, Russiaโ€™s coaching staff found out bad news regarding the injury of the starting middle blocker Iliyas Kurkaev. Although the x-ray showed there was no fracture, the MRI determined a ligament tear. This means that Kurkaev will not play the rest of EuroVolley. Dmitriy Volkov and Viktor Poletaev scored 13 points apiece today, with the latter serving 5 aces.

Tuomas Sammelvuo – head coach (RUS):
Very tough match, it was a lot about service and reception. Both teams served really hard I’m happy that we played stable all the time, but it doesn’t mean anything. We have to serve better, play better, we have to keep the focus day by day and not think about anything else. Our goal is to improve slowly and play better and better day by day. In the future there will be no easy games, it doesn’t matter who the opponent will be.”

Dmitriy Muserskiy – middle-blocker (RUS):
Very emotional match against the home team, arena was full of fans and it was very loud. Slovenian guys easily found their confidence even if they lost a point against us because the fans always lifted them up. But we prepared well on their game and I am glad we won 3:0.

Jan Kozamernik – middle-blocker (SLO):
Yes, it is hard to accept defeat in front of full arena, but unforunately we were a little bit short, not patient enough and we lost. Honestly, they were really consistent in serve, which we expected before the match. We thought that we ourserves will be better and we made too many mistakes. Both teams showed good pressure, but unfortunately they were better.

Alen Pajenk – middle-blocker (SLO):
After yesterdays match we cleared our heads and stepped into this game with a different attitude and a big desire to win. We prepared well for Russia, who was the favourite, but we showed on the court that we belong amongst best european teams. Russians were better today and I congratulate them for their victory. We have to prepare now for the next matches of the tournament.

Finland setting the pace through the whole first set, however Turkey push strong in the second, claiming a 7-point lead. 5 points in a row for a Turkey’s comeback in the third set, even if Finland start powerful in the fourth one. After this great battle, Finland claimed the last victory in Pool C! They proceed to eight finals together with Turkey, Russia and Slovenia! In this match, Turkish Adis Lagumdzija scored 40 points (40!), while Tommi Siirila scored 17 on the winning side.

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2019 CEV European Volleyball Championship, pool stage โ€“ Day 7:

POOL A (Montpellier, France)
Portugal โ€“ Romania 1-3 (21:25, 25:19, 18:25, 23:25)
France โ€“ Italy 3-1 (25:22, 22:25, 25:21, 25:22)

POOL B (Brussels & Antwerp, Belgium)
Germany โ€“ Slovakia 3-0 (25:23, 30:28, 25:19)
Belgium โ€“ Serbia 0-3 (19:25, 21:25, 19:25)

POOL C (Ljubljana, Slovenia)
Slovenia โ€“ Russia 0-3 (21:25, 21:25, 21:25)
Finland โ€“ Turkey 3-2 (25:20, 15:25, 18:25, 25:23, 15:12)

POOL D (Rotterdam & Amsterdam, the Netherlands)
Ukraine โ€“ Estonia 3-0 (25:17, 25:15, 25:14)
Netherlands โ€“ Czech Republic 2-3 (18:25, 25:18, 20:25, 25:22, 14:16)

Source and Photos: CEV

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