CEV

03. 03. 2021

CL M: What a night for ZAKSA – Polish side eliminates reigning champions Lube

Source: cev.eu; Photo: cev.eu

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Grupa Azoty ZAKSA Kędzierzyn-Koźle staged an upset in the rematch of the 2021 CEV Men’s Volleyball Champions League playoff quarterfinals. It wasn’t upset because they are weak but because they eliminated the titleholders Cucine Lube Civitanova.

 

In a duel of the two national champions in the rematch of the 2021 CEV Men’s Champions League playoff quarterfinals, Italy’s Lube annulled an advantage of Poland’s ZAKSA from the 1st leg, prevailing by a 3-0 (25-22, 26-24, 26-24). So, ZAKSA’s plan to avoid Golden Set, for which they needed to take 2 sets tonight, failed. However, Nikola Grbić’s team was slightly more focused in an additional period and claimed it by 16-14. Thus, they earned a promotion to the semifinals, while Lube won’t have the chance to defend the title in the competition.

Łukasz Kaczmarek and Kamil Semeniuk scored 15 point apiece for the club from Kędzierzyn-Koźle, while Jakub Kochanowski set up 4 blocks. Cuban-Italian Osmany Juantorena also tallied 15 points, but for Lube. Cuban Robertlandy Simón served 4 aces.

The shock therapy that sometimes comes with a sudden change of coach (Blengini replaced De Giorgi) didn’t give a result to the Italian side. In the Final Four, ZAKSA will face the winners of a matchup bezween Zenit Kazan and PGE Skra Bełchatów.

2021 CEV Men’s Volleyball Champions League playoff quarterfinals – 2nd leg:

 

Bracket

 

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He signed a 2-years contract with Zaksa last year. He won Polish Cup with them, not sure what happened so Zaksa lost the championship. They kicked out Lube and Zenit from the Champions League and have a good chance of becoming European champion although Trentino didn't win anything this year so this is their last chance.
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