Tunisia and Egypt through to final of African Junior Champs
Tunis, Tunisia, March 8, 2013 - Defending champions Tunisia and Egypt have qualified for the final of the 2013 Men's Junior African Nations Championship following their victories in the semifinal matches against Morocco and Rwanda respectively on Friday.
Tunisia overpowered Morocco 3-0 (25-18, 25-19, 25-21) in 68 minutes, while Egypt fought aggressively to overcome the highly motivated Rwanda 3-0 (25-18, 25-19, 25-21) in 67 minutes.
Tunisia will play Egypt on Saturday in the final, where Tunisia is seeking their 9th title and Egypt is battling for their third. Rwanda faces Morocco in the playoff for third and fourth.
Both Egypt and Tunisia qualified for the final without dropping a set in five matches.
Tunisia, Egypt, Rwanda and Morocco have already secured the four African vacancies on offer in the tournament for the FIVB Men’s U21 World Championship to be held in Turkey later this year
In the playoffs for the fifth to eighth positions Libya overwhelmed Congo Brazzaville 3-1 (24-26, 25-20, 25-17, 25-16), while Algeria over took RD Congo 3-1 (25-20, 20-25, 25-17, 25-23).
Algeria will now meet Libya to determine the fifth and sixth positions in the tournament, while RD Congo will play their neighbours Congo Brazzaville for the seventh and eighth standings.
Tunisia reached their 12th consecutive final after they beat Morocco 3-0 (25-17, 25-22, 25-13) in 68 minutes leaving Morocco to play for the bronze medal.
Tunisia started the match as the more disciplined side showing their prowess in penetrating the Moroccan block. Tunisia used centres Mohamed Brahim and Elyes Garfi to attack through position three in addition to their clear role in blocking. Tunisia led 8-4 and 16-11 at the technical time out and succeeded through the spikes of Malek Chekir to win the set 25-17.
Morocco started the second set in better form. Although spikers Brahim Ameur and Zouhir El Garoui manged to take the team to an early lead, Tunisia regained their rhythm to win the tight set 25-22.
Tunisia controlled the match completely in the third set and succeeded in securing a 25-13 victory to win the match in straight sets.
Egypt used the strong spike services from most of their players to clinch a straight sets victory over the fighting Rwanda team (25-18, 25-19, 25-21) in 67 minutes. The victory means Egypt has qualified for the final leaving Rwanda to play for the bronze medal
Egypt started the match with centres Mohamed Adel and Ahmed Maher taking the team to an early 8-4 lead and 16-9 at the technical time out on account of their quick attacks. Rwanda came into the match late and tried to use the skillful setting of Bonny Mutabazi but Egypt deployed their solid block to win the set 25-18.
The second set was a service battle as both teams recorded many points through the ace serves from the opposite spiker Ahmed Said (Egypt) and setter Mutabazi (Rwanda). However Egypt’s more stable reception and backline defence helped them advance at the end of the set 25-19.
Rwanda fought aggressively in the third set to save the match and with the expert blocking of Alfred Muvumyi and Fred Musoni succeeded to keep the score level until 15-15. Egypt then started to use the strong hits sent from position two through Ahmed Said to win the set 25-21 and the match in straight sets.
"The victory is due to the efforts of all the players and technical staff as we towel prepared to qualify to the final," said Egypt coach Gaber Abdel Aty. "We have to concentrate now on the final to win the trophy and then we will have time to prepare well for the World Championship."
Play off 5-8
Algeria had to fight for 100 minutes to obtain a difficult victory over RD Congo 3-1 (25-20, 20-25, 25-17, 25-23). Algeria started the match at a high level using the spikes from the wing to win the first set. The RD Congo improved their defence and moved forward quickly to win the second set. The third and fourth sets were close but the Algerian team took the matter seriously to win both sets and the match 3-1.
Libya beat Congo Brazzaville 3-1 (24-26, 25-20, 25-17, 25-16) in an exciting match that represented the best performance of the newcomers Congo in the tournament. After a fantastic first set won by Congo, Libya rebounded to win three successive sets to confirm a spot in the playoff for the 5th and 6th rankings.
South Africa achieved their lone victory in the competition against Sierra Leone 3-0 (25-16, 25-15, 25-21) to finish ninth leaving the 10th and last position to Sierra Leone. South Africa led the match through their better attacks through position four as well as a solid blocking performance.
Semifinal and Play off Results
Egypt v Rwanda 3-0 (25-18, 25-19, 25-21)
Tunisia v Morocco 3-0 (25-17, 25-22, 25-13)
Play off 5-8
Libya v Congo Brazzaville 3-1 (24-26, 25-20, 25-17, 25-16)
Algeria v RD Congo 3-1 (25-20, 20-25, 25-17, 25-23)
Ranking 9 and 10
South Africa v Sierra Leone 3-0 (25-16, 25-15, 25-21)