Poland opens Memorial Wagner with speedy win over Iran
News from the National Federations
Zielona Gora, Poland, July 20, 2012. The traditional “Memorial Hubert Jerzy Wagner” got started today in Zielona Gora with the national teams of Poland, Germany and Argentina enjoying a last opportunity to test out their shape and skills before they embark on their Olympic quest in London. The starting field is completed by Iran, the group coached by legendary Julio Velasco that missed out on an Olympic berth this past June in Tokyo after performing very well at the 2011 FIVB World Cup in Japan.
In the opening match of the tournament Germany beat Argentina 3:1 (25-23, 25-23, 21-25, and 25-19). These teams had already crossed their ways in the prelims of the FIVB World League and once again the guys mentored by Vital Heynen got the upper hand against the South Americans.
In the second match of the day the home heroes of Poland hammered a 3:0 win over Iran (26-24, 25-20, and 25-22). Actually the guests from Iran caught a good start setting the pace of the game in the opening phases before the local guys drew level at 13 after a time-out asked by their head coach Andrea Anastasi. Poland eventually pocketed the opening set 26-24 and the start of set 2 was as close as the final rush of the previous stage. Poland accelerated its pace after the second mandatory stop and eventually cruised to the final 25-20 that sealed the provisional 2:0 in sets. Poland asserted its supremacy also in set 3 claiming a margin of 3 points after the first technical time-out, eventually claiming its first match with a 3:0 win (25-22).
“We have been training very hard in the past days and so our shape is not optimal. However, things are going good for us and we still have some time left before the start of the Olympic tournament” said Anastasi after the match. “Some players are nursing minor injuries, have little problems with their back, knee our shoulder, but this is normal after the intense preparations we have been going through”.
“I am recovering from my foot injury and it is normal, by this stage, that we have some problems. Anyway, we want to keep and show our best for the Olympics” added captain Marcin Mozdzonek.
Many thanks to CEV young reporter Anna Holub for contributing this story