Bangkok, Thailand, August 21, 2011 – Cuba powered past debutants Argentina in a hard-fought three-set thriller (26-24 25-23 25-18) in their final match of the 2011 FIVB World Grand Prix preliminary round in Bangkok, Thailand on Sunday.
The sensational win was a sweet revenge for Cuba as they lost in the hotly-contested 3-2 battle to the same rivals in Pool E in Poland last week.
2011 FIVB Volleyball World Grand
Both sides came out in the same style in the first set with both focusing on their offensive game.
Taking a narrow 19-17 lead, Cuba, with Yanelys Santos Allegne and Yusidey Sille Frometa forming the team’s backbones, unleashed a series of spectacular spikes to stretch the lead to 24-23. Florencia Carlotto attacked the Cuban defence to help Argentina close the margin at 24-24 before Cuba took two more points to win the close first set 26-24.
In the second set, Argentina cruised their way back to catch up with the former world champions 16-16. From then on, the Argentineans gave everything to match the Cubans. They tried hard to overcome the oppositions’ high blocking, but their determination was to no avail as Cuba stormed on to win the set 25-23.
Holding a 2-0 advantage Cuba continued to perform superbly in the third set. Santos and Yusidey took turns attacking the smaller-built blockers with their explosive spikes. Argentina tried to challenge Cuba but the Caribbean side proved a cut apart the challengers, completely foiling the rivals’ attacking attempts. Cuba took the set 25-18 and the match. It was Cuba’s second win in this year’s World Grand Prix.