Viktor Poletaev led the way with 25 points in the final, while Dmitry
Volkov weighted in with 14 and setter and Most Valuable Player Pavel
Pankov added 13 of his own, including seven aces.
Pankov continued a fine family tradition by winning the MVP award
after a tournament in which he was a menace to his opponents with
powerful serves and well-timed incursions in attack.
His mother Marina Pankova was a member of the USSR team that
won gold at the Seoul 1988 Olympic Games and the 1990 FIVB
Women’s World Championship in Beijing, his father Vadim Pankov is
coach of the women’s team, a team that features his sister Ekaterina
To confirm his promise Pankov was part of the Russia team that won
the FIVB Men’s U21 World Championship later in the summer.
“He is the leader of our team,” Karikov said. “He learned how to play
volleyball when he was a little kid of four-years-old because everyone
in his family plays the game. He is very smart young man with an all-
round ability for the game.”
Poland meanwhile claimed the bronze medal with a 3-1 victory (19-
25, 25-21, 25-19, 25-17) over Iran in a match where the winners
scored 18 blocks, including a tournament-high nine by Batlomeij
Lemanski. He finished the bronze medal match with 18 points, a
total matched by team captain Bartosz Bucko.
“I am very happy with this victory against a strong team like Iran,”
Poland coach Wieslaw Czaja said.
“Starting from the second set we reduced our errors and our attack
improved and we were able to recover mentally from the loss to
China the day before.
“Coming to Mexico has become something special to me. Mexico
is a good country for me, because as a player I won a gold medal
almost 40 years ago, and now I’ve won this bronze medal as a coach
in another World Championship.”
Russian captain Viktor Poletaev received the U19 World Championship
Tijuana, Mexicali, Mexico, June 27 – July 7