Monday, 18 June 2018
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France eyes two wins over Korea and top spot in Pool B

Setter Loïc Le Marrec

France will attempt to take the lead in Pool B of the 2009 FIVB World League this weekend by winning both Round 3 matches against South Korea, the first on Friday in Montpellier and the second on Sunday in Toulouse.

Korea, France, Argentina and Serbia are currently neck and neck in the pool with 2 wins and 2 defeats each.

Korea are in a confident mood after beating Serbia in straight sets in their last match, and according to main man Moon Sung-Min, the team's goal is the same now as it was when the World League kicked off two weekends ago: "Our goal is, once again, to reach the final round."

France has made two changes to its squad. Setter Yannick Bazin and libero Jean-François Exiga left the team to play the Mediterranean Games in Pescara. That means Pierre Pujol, supported by Loïc Le Marrec, will take over setter duties, while libero Edouard Rowlandson, who joined the French squad yesterday in Montpellier, will replace Exiga.

Stars Oliver Kiefer and Stéphane Antiga are also back in the fold after vacation but are not yet in playing shape and are unlikely to feature prominently this weekend.

French coach Philippe Blain will probably not bring them into the rotation until matches against Serbia in Paris and Lievin next weekend before traveling overseas for matches in Asia and South America.

"The Korean team is more defensive than Argentina," Blain said. "Korea is strong with a good libero and a very good spiker. They also play a varied game, with some lots of changes making them quite effective.

"We will have to be patient to get points, maybe to chain some attacks. I'm expecting a hard game against Korea."


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