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06/12/2012 18:00
Omichka claims first round of quarterfinal with Baki-Azeryol
2013 CEV Volleyball Cup - Women

Omsk, Russia, December 6, 2012. Russia’s Omichka OMSK REGION claimed on Thursday the first round of play in the 1/4 finals of the 2013 CEV Volleyball Cup – Women by edging Baki-Azeryol BAKU of Azerbaijan with the score of 3:1 (25-17, 20-25, 25-20, and 25-12) now waiting for the return that is scheduled for December 13 in Azerbaijan’s capital city.  
Yuliya Podskalnaya and Natalya Mammadova contributed a small lead for the home side (4:2) in the early phases of the opening set, but the guests fought back to draw level at 5. Omichka got to the front by the first mandatory stop (8:7) and afterwards accelerated the pace going up by four (14:10). Baki-Azeryol head coach Aleksandr Chervyakov stopped the game; his side re-grouped and cut the gap by one point. However, Omichka could head confidently into the final rush (20:16) with Podskalnaya scoring the last point for the provisional 1:0 (25-17).  
The teams started out the second set by showing some great actions and BAKU going up by the first technical time-out (6:8). Omichka gradually lost momentum and trailed by seven points (9:16) as the guests from Azerbaijan were playing in full swing. Omichka head coach Zoran Terzic asked for a time-out by the score of 10:18 but could not stop the run of Baki-Azeryol that could celebrate the 1:1 only a few minutes later (20-25).
BAKU stretched that momentum also to the early phases of set 3 (2:5) before Omichka finally got back on track mainly via the contribution of Natalya Mammadova from the serving line, the blocks by Ekaterina Orlova and a few attacks killed by Nelli Alisheva. Omichka set the pace of the game as the teams were called by the side for the first mandatory stop (8:5) and OMSK maintained a margin of three also later in the set (16:13). This small cushion was eventually decisive as OMSK resisted to an attempted comeback by Baki-Azeryol and finished it off at 25-20 for the provisional 2:1.  
Omichka opened set 4 with three consecutive points and had a margin of 6 by the first technical time-out. The Siberian side dominated the scene all the way through going up by 10 (21:11) and after a splendid rally where the liberos of Omichka and BAKU delighted the audience with their great defensive skills, OMSK REGION could pocket that much desired home win (25-12).  

“We had prepared very carefully for this match and here in Omsk we wanted to display some good Volleyball. I think we have achieved this goal with the only disappointment resulting from the fourth set where we could not resist to the great power displayed by Omichka in attack” stresses BAKU head coach Aleksandr Chervyakov. “We have some young and inexperienced players in our team but finally I think this was a good match”.  

“My congratulations are addressed to both teams because this was a good game” says Omichka mentor Zoran Terzic. “We had been preparing very carefully for this match for the past two weeks. We have a good chance to make it to the Challenge Round which would be a great success for our club. This was the second time we played a team from Azerbaijan, but Baki-Azeryol has different features than Igtisadchi. Igtisadchi plays fast Volleyball and does not have tall players, while Baki’s style is more similar to ours”.    

“We played a young but very motivated team that wanted to cause a sensation by beating us but they eventually could not make it happen” says Omichka star Natalya Mammadova. “We enjoyed the home advantage and our fans helped us a lot. In the second part of the game we improved our serve, defense and block while our opponents struggled in reception. Next week in Baku I would like to avoid the golden set and I am confident we can score a second win”.  

The libero of Omichka, Victoria Kuzyakina, concludes: “Our opponents wanted to surprise us but we did not allow this scenario to turn into reality. We started out feeling the pressure that is always connected with a match of the European Cups but gradually found our rhythm and eventually got a positive result. We tried to play with good consistency, pressuring our opponents with the service. It won’t be easy in Baku as our opponents will enjoy the support of their fans but we surely want to make it to the next round of the competition”.

Click here for more info about the game

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