Doha, Qatar, December 19, 2010 – Argentina's Drean Bolivar caused the first major upset here at the 2010 FIVB Club World Championships as they defeated Dynamo Moscow in four sets (25-22, 25-22, 21-25, 25-19) to qualify for the semifinals, where they will play Poland's PGE Skra Belchatow.
The South Americans played at their very best this afternoon while the Russians, consigned to third place in Pool B, struggled to find consistency and were hampered by unforced errors. Federico Pereyra topped the scorers' chart with 16 points with three other Bolivar players – Javier Filardi, Sebastian Sole and Lucas Ocampo – also finishing the game in double digits. Curiously Bolivar outblocked Dynamo 12-9 – a surprise given the Russians' strength in this fundamental thanks to their impressive height and physical skills.
It was billed as the most exciting match of the day with both teams vying for a spot in the semis and the young Argentinians got off to a flying start by dominating the opening of the game, moving 8-3 in front with their solid attacks and blocks. Their fighting spirit and motivation were clear to see as they battled for every single point and maintained an excellent tempo – especially in defence – on their way to the second technical break (16-13).
With another block on a Russian first tempo, Bolivar widened the gap to 19-15 but coach Javier Weber was soon forced into a time-out after Dynamo scored twice in a row, including an ace from Alexey Kazakov. Weber got the response he was looking for as Pereyra spiked from the back row and another block restored the Argentinian side's lead at 21-17. Both teams were making mistakes from the serving line but eventually Bolivar got the upper hand (25-22) with a notable contribution from the first tempos of captain Gabriel Arroyo.
Dynamo came back on court for the second set with the clear intention of fighting back and Yury Cherednik's men found more consistency as they took an 8-5 lead. Yet Bolivar were playing superbly and after Kazakov missed a first tempo, the South Americans drew level at 12-all. Dynamo were still making errors, especially in reception, although Brazilian star Dante and Hungarian Peter Veres helped keep them narrowly in front (16-15). Bolivar levelled twice at 18 and 20, though, and then went 22-20 in front when the Russian attackers missed two in a row. The cheers of the few South American fans in the arena were getting louder and louder and when Pavel Kruglov failed once again to score, Bolivar bagged three set points, with Filardi taking the second of them (25-22).
Bolivar, playing as if they had wings on their feet, took command early in set No3 as they moved 8-6 ahead. Dynamo were struggling in defence, and captain Sergey Grankin was often not in position to set the ball for his attackers, a role that was even taken over by the giant Kazakov. After a tie at 17-all, though, the Moscow club profited from the first set of mistakes made by Bolivar to climb into a 22-17 lead. The South Americans got closer at 23-21, but then Ocampo missed his serve and another error by Filardi handed the set to the Russians.
Bolivar shrugged off that setback and claimed a decisive mini-break (13-9) in the fourth set with a series of splendid attacks. Veres tried to inspire a possible comeback for Dynamo (14-12) and was the only player in the Russian side who was able to score consistently – this despite coach Cherednik's substitutions, which included Dante and Dmitry Shcherbinin heading out for a while. Sole earned match point with a delicious lob and the same player took the first chance to seal a sizeable upset and send the Russian team home.