Opole, Poland, December 14, 2017 – Italian champions Cucine Lube Civianova shut out two-time Asian champions Sarmaye Bank of Tehran 3-0 (26-24, 25-17, 25-23) to finish undefeated at the top of Pool A at the 2017 FIVB Men’s Club World Championship.
Lube join defending champions Sada Cruzeiro of Contagem in advancing from the Opole pool to the semifinals of the competition, where they meet local favourites PGE Skra Belchatow who finished second in Pool B in Lodz.
Lube were powered by Osmany Junatorena, who scored 23 points with a kill efficiency of 71% (19/24).
Giampaolo Medei, Cucine Lube Civitanova Coach: “First, let me congratulate the Iranian team. They played a good match without two important players. They didn’t have anything to gain in this match, but they played very aggressively. For me, it is not normal to be this aggressive in such a situation, so congratulations. This match was difficult for us, because we were a bit tired. My team played well, especially in set endings. We finished first in our group, which allowed us to gain winning mentality, and I hope we’ll play in the semifinals with the same mentality, with the same mood.”
Dragan Stankovic, Cucine Lube Civitanova Captain: “It was another important victory for us in an important match. We finished the group in first place, and it was a very difficult group. Today, we played against an opponent who lost their chance to qualify yesterday, but we knew they would try to win and we did our best to stop them. Our defence and attacks after defence made the difference. We served well in important moments, especially at set endings.”
Mostafa Karkhaneh, Sarmayeh Bank Coach: “First of all, we are very happy to have been able to participate in this tournament. It was a very good experience for us. We played in a difficult group in comparison to the other group. Lube had Juantorena, a very useful player, who served very well, and we lost very closely in three sets. We didn’t have any chance to qualify to the semifinals in this match, but we tried to do our best, and lost only in set endings. Next year we’re also going to represent Iran, and to take part in this tournament will also be a great experience for us. We have to improve our attack and defence systems to be more successful. Next year in Poland we will be stronger and we will use the experience we gained here. I congratulate our opponent for having the best volleyball stars in your team, and we hope to see you play in the final.”
Adel Gholami, Sarmaye Bank middle blocker: “First let me congratulate our opponents. It was a very good match. We gained a lot of experience, although we lost, but we fought Lube in every set.”
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