TEHRAN (FNA)- Iran’s National Volleyball team became the second Pool E team to secure a place in the third round of FIVB Men’s World Championship after beating Serbia 3-1.
The Asian champions showed excellent consistency throughout yesterday’s match, and overpowered Serbia in a four setter (27-25, 22-25, 25-22 and 25-18).
Amir Ghafour was again a scoring machine as he uncorked 30 points for the winning side, passing all other scorers by a wide margin. Serbia had two players who placed near the Iranian killer, Aleksandar Atanasijevic and left-handed Uros Kovacevic, both with 18 tallies.
“As a Serbian, I know how strong they are, and how good they can play, but we were lucky because Serbia played without the pressure and it was probably easier to win these three points,” Slobodan Kovac said.
“I was afraid how we will play after yesterday’s loss, but I’m happy for the result. we must wait and see, but this tournament has already been fantastic for us,” Iran’s coach added.
On the same night, Argentina eliminated the US with a 3-2 (19-25, 28-26, 25-20, 23-25, 15-11) at the Luczniczka Hall to end their campaign.
In the last matches of second round in Pool E, Italy ended their tournament with a 3-1 win over Australia, and Even though both Poland and France were qualified for the next round, the host team earned a final Pool E win by 3-2.
“We have missed our opportunity to play in the next round earlier, so this match wasn’t about the result,” Serbia coach Igor Kolakovic said.
“I’m happy with the performance of my team and young players for the first three sets, yet I wasn’t satisfied with the way we gave up in the last one. Now all I can say is good luck to team Iran,” he added.
At the end of second round in Pool E, France kept atop in Pool E with 17 points from their seven games, and are followed by Poland (16 points), Iran (15 points), the US (14 points), Serbia (9 points), Argentina (8 points), Italy (5 points) and Australia (0).
The third stage of the tournament will have France, Germany and Iran battling in Pool G in Katowice and Poland, Brazil and Russia competing in Pool H in Lodz.
The top two ranked teams of each pool after a round-robin affair will advance to the semifinals with the two lowest placed will determine the 5th and the 6th positions.
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