Knack ROESELARE adds another victory to already amazing success story
2014 CEV DenizBank Volleyball Champions League - Men
Roeselare, Belgium, December 10, 2013. On Tuesday Belgium’s Knack ROESELARE stretched their winning streak in Pool G of the 2014 CEV DenizBank Volleyball Champions League – Men to five consecutive matches as they beat Turkey’s rookie Galatasaray FXTCR ISTANBUL 3:1 (25-21, 33-31, 22-25, and 25-22) to confirm their supremacy in the group.
It was a very “hot” night at the local Schiervelde sports hall where the home fans as well as 250 supporters of Galatasaray contributed a great ambiance for this game. The guests were still vying for their first victory in the competition while Knack wanted to add another chapter to their amazing success story.
Knack started the game with the right pace (8:4) as the hosts pressured their opponents from the service line and well marshaled by their setter Eemi Tervaportti the Belgians slowly but surely could widen their lead (10:6, 14:10). Knack did not close control of the operations also after the second technical time-out (16:11, 23:14) but relaxed a little too early as their opponents fought their way back (23:20) with a great serving turn by Abdalla Ahmed. Matthijs Verhanneman claimed three set balls for Knack and a mistake by Firat Filiz Ezel sealed the final 25-21 for the home side.
The start of the second set was very close (6 all) before the game was stopped for about ten minutes because of a mistake in the rotation by Knack. Galatasaray exploited the situation to claim the lead (6:8) and the Egyptian duo comprising Abdalla Ahmed and Ahmed Abdelhay helped keep it up to 13:15. Hendrik Tuerlinckx then fired back for the home side to draw level at 15 all and a dramatic point for point race followed until Verhanneman aced for the 32:31 and Joppe Paulides stamped a massive block on Ibrahim Emet to seal the final 33-31 for Knack.
Galatasaray fought bravely in the opening of the third set (5:8, 6:9) but Gertjan Claes restored the balance at 10 and after that even opened the gap for the home side (14:10). However, as they were eyeing the finish line, the local heroes looked nervous and started making mistakes; their opponents did not dissipate that chance to flip the charts around (18:20) and eventually cruised to the final 22-25 even though Abdelhay had received a yellow card in the final moments of the set.
The situation looked tense also in the early phases of the fourth set where Ahmed got a red card to set the score up to 3:1 for Knack. With a series of good attacks killed by Paulides and Pieter Coolman, Knack moved the score up to 11:7 and showed good rhythm to set the pace also at the second technical time-out (16:10). However, once more the local heroes looked nervous and their opponent fired back to draw level at 17 all. Ruben Van Hirtum – who had replaced Claes at the beginning of the set – kept cool (20:19) and after another few good actions, Tuerlinckx – best scorer in the end with 25 points while Ahmed registered 24 for Galatasaray – put an end to this match (25-22).
“It is just unbelievable what my team has showed so far in this European campaign” said Knack head coach Emile Rousseaux. “We have 15 points after five rounds: you just can’t get more than that. If this happens in soccer, the newspapers would publish a special edition and people would not stop talking about that. I only want to congratulate my players on this amazing result.”
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