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Neftyanik sign up Georgi Bratoev and Alexandr Bogomolov

Neftyanik will rely on Georgi Bratoev to retain their place in Russia's Superliga
Orenburg, Russia, July 29, 2014 - Neftyanik Orenburg Vice President Oleg Kashitsin has announced that Bulgarian national team setter Georgi Bratoev - Best Setter at the 2012 London Olympics and in the 2012 FIVB World League - will return to the Russian Superliga next season. The Orenburg squad will also welcome middle blocker Alexandr Bogomolov from Belogorie Belgorod.

Until last season, Neftyanik played in Russia’s second division. They earned promotion after a 12 year absence from the top-tier league, however, and the 26-year-old Bulgarian international will join the team after the 2014 FIVB World Championship in Poland. Bratoev spent most of last season in the Russian Superliga, but playing for Ukraine’s Lokomotiv Kharkiv. After the club withdrew from the competition, Bratoev and his teammates went on to win the central European country’s national title. The 2.02m player also became champion of Bulgaria with Levski Siconco Sofia back in 2009 and won the national cup in 2012. He was in Bulgaria’s team for the 2009 CEV European Championship, winning bronze.

Alexandr Bogomolov will join
Neftyanik Orenburg from reigning European and world club champions Belogorie Belgorod. The experienced 38-year-old player was a key member of the team which claimed the 2014 CEV DenizBank Volleyball Champions League and FIVB Men's Club World Championship 2014 titles. It was the second time the 2.08m player won the Champions League, after being honoured as the Best Blocker of the 2008 edition as a player of Zenit Kazan. Bogomolov's many achievements also include European and world junior titles in the 1990s, as well as several national titles, national cups and the Super Cup of Russia.

“Our goals for the new season will be announced before the start of the championship, but it is self-evident that we need to keep our spot in the Superliga,” Vice President Kashitsin commented.  “Before the official start of the season, we may participate in a friendly tournament in Minsk. From September 9 through 14 we are organising a Russian Cup preliminary phase tournament at home and we will start the Superliga season on October 4.”

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