Race still on in all three pools
25, 2005 – The 2005 World League
continues to keep fans on the edge of
their seats heading into the final day
of Week 5 of the Intercontinental Round
on Sunday with all three Pools still
undecided in the race for the Final
Round in Belgrade.
Automatic qualifiers Serbia & Montenegro
silenced over 11,000 local fans when
they pipped Poland on Saturday in a
marathon five-set cliff hanger 3-2
(23-25, 23-25, 25-20, 25-21, 15-10) in
Katowice, which opens the door for third
placed Greece to close the gap on the
Pool C leaders, when they play Argentina
Pic: Italy fought back to beat Cuba
after losing on Friday
Poland lead the group with a 7-3 record,
followed by Serbia & Montenegro (5-5)
and Greece (5-4). Argentina are out of
contention having won two matches and
lost seven to date.
The contest is even closer in Pool B
where Cuba and Italy are neck and neck
after the 2004 silver medallists fought
back with an impressive 3-1 (25-20,
23-25, 29-27, 25-19) win in Havana in
front of 16,000 fans.
Italy erased a poor performance on
Friday to take revenge with an excellent
performance. The eight-time World League
champions now sit level with Cuba with
six wins and four losses, although Cuba
is ahead with a better set average.
Bulgaria (4-5) and France (3-6) have a
chance to close in on the leaders when
they play on Sunday.
In Pool A, Portugal will need to beat
Venezuela for their second time running
to keep their Final Round hopes alive
after Brazil beat Japan 3-0 (25-16,
25-14, 25-18) to maintain their lead at
the top of the group. All four sides
play again on Saturday with Brazil in
first place with a 8-1 record followed
by Portugal (6-3) while Venezuela (4-5)
and Japan (0-9) are out of contention.