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Bernardinho expects tough battle at home and Murilo returns

Brazil expect a tough battle this weekend as they take on Poland at home
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, June, 1, 2011 – After a good start last week with two straight victories against Puerto Rico in San Juan, Brazil will play its first match in front of its enthusiastic home crowd in the 2011 FIVB Volleyball World League at Maracañazinho gymnasium, in Rio de Janeiro.

The nine time champions will take Poland on June 4 and 5. The side will also welcome back wing spiker Murilo Endres who didn't play last weekend due to personal reasons.

“Poland is a team with a strong attack. We will need to serve well to help our block and our defense. Kurek also is a dangerous player and he has been playing really well. It is good to be together with the team again”, Murilo said.

Brazilian coach Bernardinho is excited to lead Brazil in its first match at home. Furthermore, he expects a tough match this weekend.

“We played last year against Poland in the World Championship in Italy and we had a good presentation that day winning by 3-0," he said. "However, they are a team with a lot of potential and will play here without any responsibility what is always dangerous."

The legendary Brazilian coach also remembered the tradition of Polish´s volleyball. “We need to receive them with a lot of respect and tenderness. They always treat us well at their home. The Polish are passionate for volleyball. They have a lot of tradition in the sport. Volleyball is the first sport for them and they have an Olympic gold medal in their history."

One of the Brazilians players that shined last weekend against Puerto Rico with 61.29 per cent efficiency in attack was wing spiker João Paulo Bravo. He said he is motivated for the matches against Poland in Rio de Janeiro after last week's experience.

“Last week I played my first matches in the World League and I played well," he said. "I think that my experience helped in that occasion. I am excited and without pressure for the games this weekend. I arrived in the Brazilian national team older than the normal and it helped in a way."

On the other side Poland will fight for their second victory in this edition of the tournament. Last weekend the Polish team beat Olympic champions USA in straight sets (25-20, 25-22 and 25-19) in their opening match in front of their home fans in Lodz. However, USA gained revenge in the second match as they saw off the European champions 3-0 to clinch their first win of the 2011 FIVB Volleyball World League.

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