Brasilia, Brazil, June 19, 2009 - With the reinforcements
of wing-spiker Giba and middle-blocker Rodrigao, both playing in the 2009 FIVB
World League for the first time, Brazil achieved its third win at the
The South Americans beat Finland 3-2 (25-22, 26-28,
25-16, 23-25 and 15-9) at Nilson Nelson Gymnasium here on Friday in the first
of two matches between the teams this weekend.
With the result, Brazil remains unbeaten in the Pool D of
the tournament and is looking strong on its march toward its eighth title at
the competition. Finland dropped to 1-2. Brazil and Finland will play again
this Saturday at 10 a.m. (local time), at the same venue.
Finnish opposite Mikko Oivanen led all scorers with 17
points, all from spikes. Four players scored 15 points each: Finnish
wing-spiker Antti Siltala and Brazilian opposite Rivaldo, wing-spiker Murilo
Endres and middle-blocker Lucas Saatkamp.
With Giba and Rodrigao in the starting lineup, Brazil was
surprised by Finland's good start as the European team had a 4-1 lead after
middle-blocker Jukka Lehtonen stopped Giba. Serving strongly, Brazil tied the
match at 5-5 with Rivaldo spiking, before taking the lead for the first time
when Giba scored on the serve, 7-6. With neither team getting a good advantage
on the scoreboard until the end of the set, Brazil closed the first frame 25-22
with a spike from middle-blocker Lucas Saatkamp.
As in the first set, Finland took control of the
beginning of the second. Counting on Brazilian mistakes and a serve point from
wing-spiker Antti Siltala, the Europeans went into the first technical timeout
with an 8-4 lead. Keeping the good rhythm, the Finns maintained a good
advantage into the second TTO, 16-13, with Brazilian captain Murilo Endres
spiking out. Opposite Rivaldo's block brought Brazil back to 21-21 but with two
consecutive mistakes from Lucas Saatkamp, Finland took the second frame 28-26.
In the third set, Brazil imposed its way of playing and
went into the first TTO up 8-5 when Rivaldo spiked from the backcourt. Making
fewer mistakes, the reigning world champions took a 21-14 lead with Rodrigao's
balanced serve. A flying backcourt score from Murilo Endres ended the set 25-16
in favor of the hosts.
Wing-spiker Matti Hietanen was the Finns' main player in
the beginning of the fourth set and led the team to a 12-10 advantage with two
points from spikes and one from the service area. Saatkamp and Endres gave
Brazil the lead again at 15-12 with some fine spikes. But the Brazilian spikers
stumbled later and Finland closed to 20-19. With Rivaldo spiking out, the
Finnish tied the match again: 25-23.
In the last set, Brazil started better and led by Bruno
Rezende in the service area, the South Americans did not take long to take a
3-0 lead. With Rodrigao spiking, Brazil kept the advantage (8-5) at the side
switch. Finland lost its concentration and made several mistakes, making things
easier for Brazil. A serve error by Matti Hietanen gave the host team its third