Volleyball News
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 9, 2016 – World champions Poland held off a strong comeback effort by Iran to claim a five-set victory 3-2 (25-17, 25-23, 23-25, 20-25, 18-16) in the men’s volleyball tournament of Rio 2016 Olympic Games on Tuesday night.
Poland improved their win-loss record to 2-0 in Pool B, while Iran fell to 0-2.
Bartosz Kurek had a tournament-high 23 points to lead the Polish victory, followed by Michal Kubiak with 18 and Mateusz Bieniek and Karol Klos with 12 apiece.
Seyed Mousavi led Iran with 18 points, including 8 blocks, while Shahram Mahmoudi and Milad Ebadipour added 16 and 15, respectively.
Lomacz landed one ace for an 8-5 advantage of Poland in the first set. They increased the lead at 11-6 with one spike of Bieniek and to 19-12 with one ace by Klos. It was a lopsided opening set that concluded 25-17.
The second set was battle point by point that finished 25-23 with spikes by Kurek and Bartosz around a Polish unforced error.
Ebadipour gave Iran a 6-2 lead in the third set, but Poland came back to tie at 7-7 with a spike by Kurek. The set was tied 17 times before Iran claimed it following two Polish errors by Klos and Kubiak.
Iran pulled one spectacular comeback to claim the fourth set after trailing 19-16. Two spikes by Mousavi around one by Ebadipour produced the tie and Iran continued their inspired game until the end 25-20.
In the tie-breaker teams traded sides with Iran leading 8-7 following the block by Mousavi against Kurek. Poland tied 8-8 with the spike by Bieniek. At 13-13, Mahmoudi scored for match-point but Ebadipour served out of bounds. At 15-all Bieniek served one ace for match-point but then missed long. Poland won 18-16 with spike by Klos and opponent error.
Stephane Antiga, Coach of Poland: It was great volleyball match and an important step towards the quarterfinals for us. We could have finished earlier, but Iran played great defence. After the fourth set it was an open game for either team. I am glad we won it. Today the people watched two very good teams.
Michal Kubiak, Captain of Poland: It was a tough match for us and after the second set Iran started to play better. We knew it was going to be a tough match, but we won it. We should have ended in the fourth set when we were ahead 19-16 but we lost our concentration. It happens in sports. 
Raul Lozano, Coach of Iran: All the matches against Poland are always hard and close and today it was not different. Poland played better at the beginning and then Iran improved. It was a balanced match. Congratulations to Poland for playing better at the end of the game.  I think we played better than against Argentina and it is a good sign.
Saeid Marouf, Captain of Iran: We came back in the third set and I think we had the chance to win the second set. We lost the match because our mistakes.
Shahram Mahmoudi, Player of Iran: We played better in this match than in our first one. We were in good shape but then in the tie-break we didn’t play well in the last important moments, so we lost again. I am really sad we didn’t win today but we need to continue because we need to improve. We have a good team and we are ready to fight in the next three matches, so I hope we can make it to the quarterfinals.”