DAY 2 WRAPUP
Tehran, Iran, May 15, 2022 – M. Shahdab Yazd and Taraz VC captured two wins apiece in Pool B, while hosts Peykan look set to make a clean sweep in Pool A after 3-1 win against Japan’s Suntory Sunbirds to next take on Nakhon Ratchasima QminC VC in their last preliminary clash on Monday in the 2022 Asian Men’s Club Volleyball Championship at Azadi Indoor Stadium here.
In Pool B, M. Shahdab Yazd and Taraz VC remained on course following their similar two wins in a row in the one-week-long championship. Embattled Taraz VC shrugged off their below-par performance to beat the Qatari Premier League champions Al-Rayyan in tie-breaker on the very first day of the competition before breeziing past Erbil of Iraq in comfortable straight sets 25-13, 25-20, 25-11 on Sunday.
Despite two wins in hand, Taraz VC will face a daunting task on Monday, the last day of the pool preliminaries since they will go up against M. Shahdab Yazd, the team which entitled Super League champion of Iran for the first time and are bringing up high hopes of capturing the maiden title in Asia as well. The Monday’s match will decide the top spot in Pool B.
With a lopsided win against Erbil, Boris Gerbennikov, head coach of Taraz VC, expressed his satisfaction, but admitted that the following match against Shahdab will be one of the most important to be reckoned with.
“The Iraqi team are strong and promising, while our team were tired because of playing five sets yesterday. Tomorrow’s game will be an important experience for my players to check their levels against strong teams. They are young and inexperienced. We are getting ready to achieve a good result,” Gerbennikov commented.
Shahdab, fresh from 3-0 demolition of Erbil in their first match on Saturday, proved a cut above Al-Rayyan to tactically and technically overwhelm the Qatari side in straight sets 25-20, 25-17, 25-14.
“Our main focus was today on our performance. I made some changes in the arrangement today to evaluate our level. We have a far way up to the final and we have to be focused to perform better”, Shahdab’s head coach Alireza Tolouekian commented after the match.
At the end of Sunday’s encounters, Shahdab surged ahead Taraz to the top of Pool B. Both teams have won two games apiece, but Shahdab fared better as they have yet lost a single set and as a result, stay atop the Pool B standing.
Al-Rayyan and Erbil suffered two successive losses in Pool B, but both teams have their sights set on claiming their first win in this tournament when they will fight it out for the third place in the group.
Meanwhile, hosts Peykan, another team from Iran, which had won seven Asian Men’s Club Championship to their name, overcame a strong challenge from Suntory Sunbirds to demolish the determined Japanese side in thrilling four-setter 22-25, 25-19, 25-19, 25-21 in Pool A.
After a straight-set letdown to hosts Peykan in the previous match on Saturday, South Gas Sports Club of Iraq came into the court with the winning attitude, only to leave the competition venue with their heads low in disappointment with two consecutive losses, this time at the hands of Thailand’s Nakhon Ratchasima QminC, loaded with strong players including captain Wanchai Tabwises and Uzbek’s Islomjon Sobirov.
“I am so satisfied to get our first win against strong South Gas. We have faced each other in the previous edition on our home soil and beat them 3-1 and we were lucky to repeat the same result. For tomorrow’s match against Peykan, we will do our best no matter what the result will be. I am happy that my players are finding the chance to play against such big stars and foreign players of Peykan. The experience from these matches will be truly effective for us in the future,” Padejsuk Vannachote, head coach of Nakhon Ratchasima, was quoted as saying after the match.
On Monday, teams will contest their last matches in the pool round-robin preliminaries and will be classified according to performances in their pools. The quarterfinals will be held on Wednesday, with Pool A winners taking on Pool B fourth place and Pool A second finishers playing Pool B third place.
The four winners in the quarterfinals will then advance to the do-or-die semifinals, with the four losers relegated to classification round for 5th-8th places.
South Gas Sports Club (Iraq) v Suntory Sunbirds (Japan)
Erbil (Iraq) v Al-Rayyan (Qatar)
Tehran Peykan (Iran) v Nakhon Ratchasima QminC VC (Thailand)
M. Shahdab Yazd (Iran) v Taraz VC (Kazakhstan)
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