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World League 2002 - Press Info

Match Descriptive

Italy beat Spain 3-1 (25-14, 22-25, 25-18, 25-23) - duration 1:40
02-Aug, start time: 20:30, end time: 22:10 - Attendance: 3,600
Italy tops Pool B with win over Spain
Pool B Leaders Italy and Spain faced off on Friday in Catania, Sicily, with the Squadra Azzurri of Andrea Anastasi conquering the visitors 3-1 to secure the coveted top spot on the Pool B table after the Intercontinental Rounds. Both teams go to Brazil to contest the finals.
Italy started strongly, running up a five-point advantage in the opening phase, thanks in part to their wall of defense which remained intact to allow the home team to coast through with a 25-14 victory in the first set.
Spain got back into the match to challenge Italy in the second, leveling at 5-5. Then Zlatanov bungled a service and Carreno delivered an ace to put Spain in front. Saucedo's leadership was very important for Spain, while Italy had difficulties receiving the Spanish services. Spain went up 17-12, Italy scrambled back, but the set went to Spain 25-22. Italy reclaimed power in the third set, thanks to the mighty Alessandro Fei, who turned the match in Italy's favor and allowed them to take a 25-18 third set. The rest was a formality, and even though Spain put on a valiant showing in the closing stages, the final set went the way of the powerful Italians in one hour 40 minutes.
/mh