Poland overcame deficits in the first two sets en route to a 25-22, 27-25, 25-27, 22-25, 15-12 victory before 7,500 spectators most of them from the Polish Toronto community, although there was a good-size Brazilian contingent as well.
Zbigniew Bartman led Poland with 20 points while Michal Winiarski added 17. Wallace de Souza topped all scorers at 26 for Brazil and Amaral Dante added 16.
Poland went on an impressive 9-2 run to end the first set erasing a 20-16 deficit. While they demonstrated great power in attack it was their gentle play at the net that completely fooled the Brazilian players.
The second set also saw Poland claw back. Down 10-14 at one point, Poland climbed its way back to a 22-20 lead but squandered set point twice at 24-22. A kill by Dante and a great block by Lucas off a Bartman attack sent the set to extra points. Another extraordinary kill by Bartman gave Poland a 26-25 lead and Theo’s tip at the right side of net went off the antenna to end the set.
It was Brazil’s turn to make a late comeback in set three. Lagging behind at 15-20, the Brazilians went on a 7-2 roll to tie the match at 22. Poland regained one point leads three times, including twice on Brazilian errors. Wallace destabilized Poland with a wicked serve then finished of the rally with a well placed hit to narrowly win the set.
It remained close throughout the fourth set and Poland seemed to have regained its stride as Bartosz Kurek scored on a kill and Jakub Jarosz tied the match at 18-18. Wallace continued to be dominant for the Brazilians however, scoring twice on blocks late on to take the match to a fifth.
Poland stormed out to a 8-3 led in the decider, but Siao‘s serving helped Brazil score five straight points to pull their European rivals back. The set capped a great match for Winiarski who scored three consecutive kills for Poland and delivered the winning point off the block from Sidao.