The distribution of Diana Nenova helped Bulgaria to overcome the resistance of Serbia in a disputed and exhausting first set 34-32 that gave Bulgaria an advantage in the match. The players trained by Marcello Abbondanza were able to keep their outstanding poise through the second set, as Serbia desperately searched for a come-back. However, Bulgaria was on an exceptional roll and the great performance by Strashamira Filipova put the 25-22 that situated Bulgarian players one step away of the Final.
Serbian head coach, Zoran Terzic attempted the recovery replacing Maja Ognjenovic and Jovana Brakocevic for Bojana Zivkovic and Sanja Starovic and the gamble momentarily paid off, as Serbia achieved a hopeful partial victory for “plavi” team (21-25). Nonetheless, the inspiration was on Bulgarian side of the net, and the players directed by Marcello Abbondanza succeed in putting a stop to Serbian momentum through the spikes of Strashamira Filipova and their successful blocking system. Despite Serbian attempts, Bulgarian players confirmed their breathtaking performance (25-20) and inflicted “plavi” team its first defeat in the tournament in two years. The last time Serbia lost a match in CEV European League was on June, 2010, precisely against Bulgaria, registering a record for Serbians that lasted 34 consecutive victories in the tournament; a record that finished in KV Arena of Karlovy Vary.
This victory gives Bulgaria a spot in the big Final scheduled for Friday, at 18:00 GMT +1 and also guarantees Bulgarian team a spot in the next edition of Grand Prix. Bulgaria will clash in the Final with the winners of the second semi-final between The Netherlands and local team of Czech Republic.