FIVB - Women's Volleyball World Cup 2011

MATCH INFO

Russia book ticket to London in victory over Iran


Russia setter Alexander Butko shows off his great skills in defense during the victorious match with Iran

Tokyo, Japan, December 3, 2011 - Russia recorded a straight sets (31-29, 25-21, 25-18) win over Iran on the second day of fourth-round action in the 2011 FIVB Men's World Cup at Yoyogi National Gym on Saturday. By taking the first two sets of the match, Russia became the first team to qualify for the London Olympic Games next summer. The victory lifted Russia's record in the tournament to an impressive 9-1. Their lone loss came to Brazil. Iran fell to 6-4 with the defeat. Maxim Mikhaylov (15 points) and Denis Biriukov (14 points) powered the Russia attack in the win. Amir Ghafour had a match-high 19 points for Iran in the loss and was named the most impressive player of the match. Iran played well at the outset and actually had the chance to take the opening set, but missed the opportunity and could not recover. Russia's defense and power were just too much to deal with on this day.

Men’s World Cup Results/Standings, Match Info, Photos or Live Scoring

Russia took a 6-4 lead in the opening set after a spike by Alexander Volkov. A block by Alexander Butko sent Russia into the first TTO with an 8-5 lead. A spike by Mohammad Mousavi made it 8-6. Taras Khtey spiked to make it 10-6 for Russia. A Mikhaylov spike put Russia up 12-8. Iran pulled within 12-11 when Nikolay Apalikov sent a spike wide. An excellent rally ended with a point for Iran and Russia led 14-13. Maxim's spike put Russia ahead 16-14 at the second TTO. Iran tied it 17-17, but Russia immediately retook the lead at 18-17. An infraction put Russia up 20-19 and a service ace made it 21-19. Ghafour's spike maded it 21-20. A service error by Apalikov left Russia up 23-22, but then Ghafour served into the net for set point. Khtey's spike was long and it was 24-24. Apalikov spiked to give Russia another set point, but Iran replied to even again at 25-25. A service ace by Mousavi then gave Iran set point at 26-25, but he served long. Biriukov's block put Russia up 27-26, but once more Iran fought back to equalize. Ghafour then soared for a spike and a 28-27 lead. Russia tied it on a spike by Mikhaylov and took the lead on a block by Mikhaylov. Back and forth it went. With the score even at 29-29, Iran served into the net and Russia took the set 31-29 on a soft spike by Biriukov. Ghafour had nine points in the set, while Biriukov tallied seven points.

Russia established a 6-3 lead in the second set and Iran called timeout. A block by Mousavi made it 7-5 in favor of Russia. Russia was ahead 8-6 at the first TTO. A spike by Mikhaylov made the count 10-7. Arash Kamalvand's spike put the score at 13-10 for Russia. Biriukov's spike gave Russia a four-point lead at 15-11. Mikhaylov ripped a spike to give Russia 16-12 lead at the second TTO. A service ace by Ghafour pulled Iran within two at 16-14. Arash Keshavarzi sent a spike long and Russia moved ahead 20-16. Ghafour's spike made it 20-19. Alireza Nadi then blocked to tie it 20-20. A service ace by Apalikov made it 22-20 for Russia. Ghafour's spike moved it to 23-21. Mikhaylov ripped a spike for set point at 24-21 and Russia ended it 25-21 with a block. The victory in the second set qualified the Russians for the London Olympics. Khtey and Ghafour had six points apiece in the set.

A spike by Khtey put Russia in front 5-4 in the third set. Mousavi's spike went out and Russia moved ahead 7-5. They led 8-5 at the first TTO. A Biriukov spike put Russia up 12-8 and Iran took a timeout. A service ace by Kamalvand made it 13-11. Consecutive spikes by 218-centimeter Dmitriy Muserskiy gave Russia a 15-11 advantage. Nadi's service error gave Russia 16-12 margin at the second TTO. Ghafour scored again on a spike for 18-14. Mikhaylov's spike put Russia in front 21-17 as the moved toward taking the match. A dink by Mikhaylov made it 23-17 and then a reception error by Iran took it to match point at 24-18. Russia completed the victory 25-18 on another reception mistake by Iran.


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