PUNE, India (Aug. 2, 2009) – Using its height advantage, Belarus put on a blocking clinic in defeating Tunisia 24-26, 26-24, 25-17, 25-17 on the third day of FIVB Men’s Junior World Championship first-round Pool A action at Pune, India.
Belarus, now 2-1, improved its chances of reaching the second-round’s top eight classification matches with the victory, but will need to await the results of the final match of the day between host India and USA. If India (1-1) defeats USA (2-0), a three-way tie for first would occur and the tiebreaking procedure would need to be implemented to see which two teams advance to the top eight.
Siarhei Busel sparked Belarus with a match-high 15 points, including six blocks. Teammates Andrei Radziuk, Pavel Audochanka and Artur Udrys all had 11 points in the victory.
Khaled Ben Rejeb led Tunisia with 15 points, while Ismail Moalla tacked on 13 points in the loss.
Belarus recorded 24 blocks in the match with nine different players recording at least one. Tunisia had 11 blocks of its own and trailed only 45-44 in kills. Belarus had a 5-3 margin in aces. Both teams had 26 errors.
Belarus picked up a three-point lead at 12-9 lead in the opening set, but Tunisia battled back to take a 16-15 lead into the second technical timeout. Belarus responded with three unanswered points to take an 18-16 advantage. Tunisia battled back with six of the next eight points to nab a 22-20 lead. Urdys picked up key blocks for Belarus to tie the set at 22-all and one that put it ahead 24-23. However, Tunisia scored the final three points capped by a Karoui block at 26-24. Moalla paced Tunisia with five points, while Urdys led Belarus with six points including two aces.
Tunisia continued the momentum into the second set by rolling to a 4-1 lead. Tunisia went into the first technical timeout with an 8-4 advantage. Belarus came out of the break with three consecutive points including two blocks to cut the deficit to one at 8-7. Busel served an ace to put Belarus into an 11-all tie. Udrys and Mikhnevich formed a block to put Belarus up 13-12. Belarus’ Mikalai Shkliar stuff blocked a Tunisia attack to give his team a 16-14 cushion at the second technical timeout. A Tunisia attack error lifted Belarus to a three-point advantage at 18-15, but Tunisia came back to score the next two points to narrow it back to a one-point set at 18-17. Tunisia tied the set aat 18-all as Belarus was called with a lift. Mikhnevich found a crease in the Tunisia defense for a kill putting Belarus back in front 20-18. Tunisia came back to take a 22-21 lead with four of the next five points. Tunisia’s Mohamed Ali Saada put up a block giving his team two set points at 24-22. Belarus saved both set points and scored the final four points of the set. The Belarus libero went to the other side of the net to save the ball and it hit a Tunisia player on the way back over to tie the set at 24-all. Belarus then picked up a set point at 25-24 on a Tunisia error followed by a block formed by Busel and Urdys at 26-24. Belarus put up five blocks in the set to offset Saada’s seven points for Tunisia.
Busel scored a block and kill helping Belarus to a 4-1 lead in the third set. Out of a timeout, Busel added another block giving Belarus a 5-1 lead and his team went up further at 7-1. Tunisia charged back to close the gap to three at 8-5. Belarus scored three straight points heading into the second technical timeout leading 16-11. Tunisia chipped off three points of the deficit at 17-15. Udrys put up back-to-back blocks as part of a Belarus 4-0 run putting the score at 21-15, then Yauheni Misiyuk added another block at 22-15. Belarus rolled the rest of the way to a 25-17 victory. Belarus’ block was huge in the third set with 11 stuffs of Tunisia attacks.
Busel started Belarus off in the right direction to start set four with a kill and two blocks around a Tunisia error giving his team a 4-0 advantage. Belarus went into the technical timeout with an 8-4 cushion. Belarus continued to put pressure on Tunisia by gaining a 16-9 advantage at the second technical timeout. Tunisia made a late charge pulling to within five at 22-17. However, Tunisia couldn’t overcome the wide margin as Belarus rolled to a 25-17 victory.