Cuba beat Bulgaria 3-2 (24-26, 27-29, 25-16, 28-26, 15-9) - duration 1:56
12-Sep, start time: 20:30, end time: 22:26 - Attendance: 700 Cuba bounces back after losing first two sets
Cuba had a lot of difficulties to defeat Bulgaria in the semifinal for the fifth till eight position during the 2002 Women's World Championship. The defending champion won the clash 3-2 after losing the first two sets. Both teams started the first set nervously. The favorite Cuba still seemed to be irritated by the loss against the USA on Wednesday. At the second technical time out the Cubans were leading with a three point difference. But then it was the Bulgaria who took advantage of the Cuban mistakes and won the set with 26-24. In the beginning of the second set, Bulgaria immediatley took the lead (9-4). Again the Cuban team made many mistakes. Cuba bounced bakc and even had a set point, but Bulgaria took the second set with 29-27, because of two Cuban mistakes. In the third set, the bronze medal winner of the 2001 European Championship had a better start. But for the first time in the match the Cuban team showed their class and strength and started to attack better. Captain Yumilka Ruiz found her footings and in killed every single ball. Her team was still leading at the second technical time out with 16-12 and won the set of the match superiorly with 25-16. The team of coach Stefan Panchev was the more concentrated team in the beginning of the fourth set. After both teams steyed balanced, it was Cuba that levelled the match (28-26). In the fifth set, Cuba took an early lead and never gave the victory away anymore (15-9). Cuba will face Korea on Sunday in the match for the fifth position, while Bulgarian will meet Brazil on Saturday to decide which team will finish seventh. Yumilka Ruiz was the best scorer with 31 points. Bulgarian Antonia Zetova made 24 points.