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2005 edition
World Grand Prix 2004 - Press Info

Match Descriptive

Brazil beat U.S.A. 3-2 (25-18, 19-25, 25-23, 21-25, 19-17) - duration 2:11
31-Jul, start time: 18:30, end time: 20:41 - Attendance: 1'000
City: Reggio Calabria; Hall : Palapentimele hall
Brazil book final spot with stunning win over USA
The match was always set for a fantastic showdown with Brazil having only lost one game all tournament, against Cuba on Wednesday, while USA are ranked number two in the world. And it was Brazil who triumphed by continuing their terrific Grand Prix form of the Preliminary Round where they didn't lose a match.

The Brazilians got off to the better start opening a 6-3 lead with Erika Coimbra particularly effective on attack. Marianne Steinbrecher and Virna Dias also combined superbly for the Brazilians and once they had their noses ahead there was no turning back. Up 23-17, the rest was a formality for the South Americans and it was fitting that Erika spiked home the final point of the set.

The USA of old came out in the second set and quickly opened a 7-3 lead. Coach Toshiaki Yoshida was a lot more animated during his team talks and this had an immediate effect with Robyn Ah Mow-Santos starting to find her attackers regularly, particularly Tayyiba Haneef. USA's defence was also improved with Logan Tom and libero Stacy Sykora making some impressive diving saves. Brazil's Steinbrecher was impressive in attack but this wasn't enough with USA running out comfortable set winners to tie up the game.

Having won one set apiece, both sides started more evenly in the third. The scores were tied at 14-14 before USA started to gain the ascendancy. A wonderful spike from Tom gave the Americans a 23-21 advantage but the brilliance of Brazil came to the fore. Four consecutive points gave them the set with Menezes Valeska blocking the final point.

Brazil started the fourth set trying to gain an edge but USA wouldn't surrender. To the surprise of the fans the Americans soon held the lead and at 22-20 they sensed the set was there's.

Into the tie break and still neither team would budge, until with Brazil ahead 10-9, Tom spiked long. It was just the break the Brazilians were after and despite USA leveling again at 13-13 they eventually sealed the match with a Steinbrecher block to fantastic scenes of jubilation.