Ural UFA scores home win in Challenge Cup semifinal clash
2013 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup - Men
Ufa, Russia, February 27, 2013. Russia’s Ural UFA edged on Wednesday Poland’s Delecta BYDGOSZCZ in the first semifinal match of the 2013 CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup – Men. Ural UFA cruised past the side that recently finished atop of the standings in the regular season of Poland’s national league with the score of 3:1 (25-19, 25-23, 22-25, and 26-24) waiting for the return coming up this Saturday in Bydgoszcz.
The hosts of Ural UFA dominated the scene in the opening set (25-19) but their guests could then adjust to the play of the Russian side that is currently fighting for a top rank before the start of the Playoffs in the Superleague. The second and third set turned into a very close fight before in set 4 Ural UFA could storm back from 23:24 via excellent serving by Andrey Ashchev to flip the charts around and finish it off at 26-24, with team captain Alexey Kazakov cashing the first match ball.
Dawid Konarski topped the charts of the best scorers with 20 points while home hero Ashchev stood out with six blocks.
“Tonight we played a very strong opponent and I think that the fans did enjoy the game” Delecta head coach Piotr Makowski says. “We still have our chances to make it to the final but we’ll have to win twice at home, i.e. first the return match and then also the eventual golden set”.
“Though we can discuss today’s match, our thoughts are already on the return game in Poland. We know it won’t be easy as we have studied the matches played by Delecta in their national league and this side is currently playing superb Volleyball” Angiolino Frigoni, the mentor of Ural UFA, stresses. “Quite understandably the match in Poland will be quite different as they will count on many supporters and Delecta will most probably play with another setter. This win does not count as everything will be decided in Poland on Saturday” Ural team captain Alexey Kazakov concludes.
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