The world champions Poland confidently beat the Czech Republic in Pool D, in Rotterdam (the Netherlands): 3-0 (25-18, 25-12, 25-15). The team coached by Vital Heynen had difficulties against neighbors only in the second set when they trailed by 4 points (8-4) before they made a 7-0 run to set the pace for the rest of the set.
Wilfredo León topped Poland’s scorers with 15 points, while Mateusz Bieniek was outstanding in the block (5 kill blocks).
Serbia struggled to outplay Spain in Pool B in Antwerp. The team coached Fernando Muñoz did not look like a team that already lost two matches in the tournament as they ran over favorites in the opening set. But Serbia, whose head coach Slobodan Kovač used 12 of 14 registered players today, established dominance afterward: 3-1 (21-25, 25-19, 25-19, 25-20). This was the first set that Serbia lost in the competition so far.
Aleksandar Atanasijević top-scored for the winning side with 23 points, while Aleksandar Okolić made 6 kill blocks. Augusto Colito scored 17 points for Spain.
France continued to stage brilliant performances at the 2019 EuroVolley. In their first big test in the tournament, the “Les Bleus“ beat Bulgaria in three sets, partially 25-19, 25-21 and 25-14, in Pool A in Montpellier. The victory ensures France one of the first two places in the pool ahead of a derby against Italy on the last day of the Preliminary Round. This was Bulgaria’s first loss in the tournament, while France have a perfect record (4-0) and remained the only team that did not concede a set.
Julien Lyneel shone for the “Les Bleus“ with 19 points (79% attack – 15/19). Kévin Le Roux added 4 aces, while Earvin Ngapeth played his first match at EuroVolley as an outside hitter (he debuted as libero, a few days ago). Tsvetan Sokolov scored 10 points for Bulgaria, while Svetoslav Gotsev set up 4 kill blocks.
North Macedonia achieved a historic first-ever win at the European Championship. They debuted this year and beat Belarus in Pool C in Ljubljana (Slovenia) by a 3-1.
The real hero for the nation from the Balkans was Nikola Gjorgiev, who poured in 37 points through 58 hits (62% attack success rate – 36/58) which was by far the best output in the tournament so far! Belarus had as much as 11 players (13 out of 14 registered players appeared on the court) who scored at least one point, led by Radzivon Miskevich with 12 points.
2019 CEV European Men’s Volleyball Championhip, pool stage – Day 5:
POOL A (Montpellier, France)
Romania – Greece 1-3 (25-23, 24-26, 25-27, 21-25)
France – Bulgaria 3-0 (25-19, 25-21, 25-14)
POOL B (Brussels & Antwerp, Belgium)
Austria – Germany 0-3 (23-25, 15-25, 16-25)
Spain – Serbia 1-3 (25-21, 19-25, 19-25, 20-25)
POOL C (Ljubljana, Slovenia)
Russia – Finland 3-0 (25-17, 26-24, 25-22)
Belarus – North Macedonia 1-3 (25-23, 19-25, 27-29, 20-25)
POOL D (Rotterdam & Amsterdam, the Netherlands)
Montenegro – Ukraine 1-3 (25-19, 18-25, 15-25, 19-25)
Poland – Czech Republic 3-0 (25-18, 25-12, 25-15)
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