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FIVB Men's World Championship Japan 2006
Match Description
Serbia-Montenegro keeps on winning

Serbia-Montenegro Andrija Geric spikes

November 21, 2006, Sendai, Japan ó Serbia-Montenegro kept their 100-percent record intact Tuesday with a hard-fought 3-1 victory over South Korea.

The No. 4 ranked team earned a 25-22, 23-25, 25-21, 25-18 win in Pool D as the Koreans dropped to 1-3.

Serbia-Montenegro coach Igor Kolakovic had said before the match that he would rest some of his big-name players as he was concerned about burnout in the tournament.

So, what does he do? He starts the match against South Korea with all them present: Goran Vujevic, The Brothers Grbic (Nikola and Vladimir) and spiking machine Ivan Miljkovic.

A formidable lineup, indeed, and they entered the second TTO of the first set 16-13 ahead on the back of some big spikes from Miljkovic and Vujevic.

The Koreans were keeping up some semblance of pressure but set point arrived after a serving violation from Kyung Soo Lee and that was clinched with a Miljkovic thunderbolt from the right.

Serbia-Montenegro looked as though they were ready to step up a couple of gears if need be, but were happy to conserve energy if the Korean resistance stayed as weak as it was.

The first TTO belonged to Serbia-Montenegro courtesy of a one-point lead, but there was less fluidity about their game at the start of the second set.

Sun Kyu Lee snapped in a spike to level things at 9-all, but then a desperate dig from Miljkovic surprised everyone by clearing the net and landing unchallenged on the Korean side.

A four-point lead was quickly established, but Byung Chul Chang cut that to two with a left-handed smash from the right, before Lee stood up to Miljkovic with a cracking block.

Serbia-Montenegro still had the edge, however, and restored the two-point lead at the second TTO, and with Miljkovic switching to the left wing after the break more points were poured into the Korean court.

But Korea leveled things up at 19-19 and then went ahead as Miljkovic spiked long.† The extra gears were not kicking in.

Time for a timeout, thought Kolakovic.

It didnít pay dividends. Korea battled to set point and a scramble at the net closed it out in favor of the Asian team.

Losing the set seemed to ruffle a few of the Serbia-Montenegro teamís feathers ó particularly the Grbic brothers ó and there was a noticeable increase in effort in the third set as the first TTO was reached with a three-point lead.

But the Koreans were not giving up, with a dazzling rally moving them to 14-14 before taking the lead 15-14.† Kolakovic had seen enough and called a time out, but it didnít stop the Koreans reaching the second TTO ahead.

Serbia-Montenegro were stung into action. Five points to Koreaís two brought a 20-17 lead, but the Asian team came back and an ace from Chang leveled it at 20-all.

But set point arrived quickly after this for Serbia-Montenegro and the winner came when Vujevic faked to spike and tickled the ball over the net instead.

The fourth set saw the reemergence of the threat of Miljkovic on the right and the first TTO came with a three-point lead for his team. Serbia-Montenegro were back in full control by the second break with a four-point advantage.

A huge Miljkovic spike forced the score to 23-17 and a spike ruled long brought match point, which was quickly dispatched by Vladimir Grbic.