PRESS RELEASE 03.08.2003


Eqypt, Tunisia, Algeria and Cameroon confirm semifinal spots

August 03, 2003 - Egypt and Tunis from Group A and Algeria and Cameroon from Group B insured their places in the semifinals of the 14th Men's African Nations Championship after collecting victories on the third and final day of the preliminary round.

In Group A Egypt defeated RD Congo 3-0 (25-19, 25-11, 25-19), while Tunisia clinched a 3-0 (25-15, 25-19, 25-10) victory over Rwanda and so Egypt finished top of the Group with 6 points followed by Tunis with 5, RD Congo with 4 points and Rwanda with 3 points.

In Group B Algeria defeated Morocco 3-1 (25-20, 25-22, 22-25, 25-19) and Cameroon had a straight sets victory over South Africa 3-0 (25-16, 25-13, 25-22) and thus Algeria topped Group B with 6 points followed by Cameroon 5 points, Morocco with 4 points and finally South Africa on 3 points.

Egypt will meet Cameroon in the first semifinal, while Algeria plays Tunisia in the second match, both on Tuesday.


In the first match of the final day of the preliminary round Tunisia achieve their win in only 54 minutes. It was easy for Tunisia to lead from the start following the impressive form of spikers Noureddine Hfaidh and Khalid Belaid to win the first set easily 25-15. In the second set it was more difficult due to the spikes of Rwanda's Jeanluc and the better block of Uwamahoro as Rwanda levelled the match twice but Tunis ended the set with a flurry of attacks led by setter Ghazi Guidara to win 25-19. The third set was a one sided game as Tunis clinched an easy win 25-10


The second match of the day between Algeria and Morocco was the most exciting as the Algerian team didn't find it easy to win. In the first set Algeria led from the start using their powerful attacking line Hachemi Hehdi and Bernaoui Krimo, with the best blocker in the match Kerboua Ali to end the set 25-20 in 20 minutes. It grew steadily harder for the Algerian team to win the second set as Morocco led several times due to the improved performance of their spiker Khalid Satour and blocker Abdesamad, but the more experienced Algerian players ended the set 25-22. The Moroccan players raised their performance to the best in the third set which was the most exciting period of the match. The solid block and the improved back defense led Morocco to win the set 25-22 in 24 minutes. Again Algerian played with heart and determination to win the fourth set 25-19 in 22 minutes.


The third match between Cameroon and South Africa was a one sided game in favour of the defending champions as Cameroon won in straight sets 25-16, 25-13, 25-22 in an hour. Menva Guy, the Cameroon blocker and the spiker Ndaki Mboulet were the stars of the match as they made a strong offensive line. The inexperienced South African players couldn't handle the Cameroon spikes thus being the only team to pass the preliminary round without winning a set.


In the fourth and last match of the day Egypt, despite using all 12 players in their squad, found it easy to win in straight sets 25-19, 25-11, 25-19 iagainst Congo. Egyptian coach Abelhamid Elwassimy intended to rest his main players for the important semifinal match against Cameroon, and unveiled some new stars in the likes of substitutes Saleh Fathy and Nehad Shehata. Congo improved dramatically in the third set but due to the improved block of Motombo and Mosange, Egypt finished the set and match with a six point margin.