Home » VNL M: USA says “no“ to Slovenia on net to start tournament on right foot; Serbia wins its opener against Bulgaria

VNL M: USA says “no“ to Slovenia on net to start tournament on right foot; Serbia wins its opener against Bulgaria

by WoV

In Brazil’s capital of Brasília, in the match valid for Pool 1’s opening day, the United States National Team proved stronger than Slovenia.

Slovenia vs USA (Photo: en.volleyballworld.com)

On competition Day 1 in Brasília, two national teams that are unquestionably among the favorites to win the 2022 FIVB Men’s Volleyball Nations League went face to face. The United States began its campaign with a victory over Slovenia. This was only the second time in history that these two adversaries faced off in a major international competition. Last year, in a VNL Preliminary Round encounter in Italy, the team from the little European country came out on top 3-2. Today, the U.S. National Team swept Slovenia, being especially dominant in team blocking (14-4). Aaron Russell and Kyle Ensing top-scored the winning side with 14 points apiece, with the former making 4 blocks. David Smith added one block more.

In the same pool, Iran defeated China 3-1. Iran’s outside hitter Morteza Sharifi led all scorers with 20 points and included 4 aces in his output. Saber Kazemi had the same number of points obtained from the service.

Serbia overcame a Bulgarian block to win the VNL opener. After a challenging opening set, the squad led by the returnee on the national team bench, Igor Kolaković, bounced back to start their campaign on a high note. In Ottawa, Canada, in Pool 2, a youthful Serbian team displayed steely nerves as they dropped the opening set against Bulgaria after losing the first 8 points, and getting blocked 8 times in the first 18 points! Adapting to the Bulgarian block (15-3 throughout the match for Bulgaria in this segment) during the match was crucial to Serbia’s triumph which rallied to win 3-1 (19-25, 25-19, 25-22, 25-20) and took all 3 points. Miran Kujundžić was the top scorer on the winning side with 19 points, 6 from serving.

Led by Christian Fromm (18 points), Germany swept Pool 2 hosts Canada by which the Polish expert Michał Winiarski debuted successfully in his new role.

2022 FIVB Men’s Volleyball Nations League – preliminary stage, Week 1, today’s matches:

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