Kaleh of Iran qualify for FIVB Men’s Club World Championship
Tehran, Iran April 29, 2013 – Kaleh of Iran qualified for the FIVB Men’s Club World Championship after proving too strong for Al-Rayyan of Qatar in the final of the 2013 Asian Men’s Club Volleyball Championship on Monday. The battle of the Asian club giants ended with a straight sets (25-22, 25-17, 25-21) victory for Kaleh and earned them a place in October’s World Championship in Brazil.
The victory was Kaleh’s ninth club championship after titles in 2002, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011.
Power of Chinese Taipei secured the bronze medal after beating Liaoning of China 3-0 (25-22, 25-23, 25-13).
The exciting final saw Kaleh gain the upper hand in the first set, using the efficient spikes and the blocking of Mohammad Mousavi and Hamzah Zarrini to lead 8-7 and 16-15. Al-Rayyan came back strongly to level the scores at 18. Qatar was very solid to penetrate the defense by their opponents, but Kaleh performed strong blocks and went easily to win the set 25-22 in 25 minutes. In the second set Kaleh continued their attacking rhythm through Mousvai and Reza Ghara and hence its offensive efforts started paying off with many points. The Iranian was able to break away at 20-14. This was enough for a comfortable finish of 25-17.
Kaleh was quick to take charge of the scoreboard at the beginning of the third set at 5-1, but Al-Rayyan did not give in that easily. Al-Rayyan started to arrange their blocks when Kaleh’ players committed some mistakes, allowing their rivals to narrow the margin and to tie at 15-15 and 20-20. Two consecutive rallies won by Kaleh brought the game to 22-20. Though head coach of Al-Rayyan asked for a time out, but Iran kept leading and took the set 25-21 and game in 85 minutes.
Behrouz Ataei, coach of Iran, said “I am happy Kaleh won the champion title. We would step into the world club championship with plan and preparation.”
Al-Rayyan coach Travica Ljubomir said, “The Iran team played well. For us it was a tough match. Playing in the final was our main goal. Reaching the final gave us good experience.”
In the third place playoff, Power of Chinese Taipei repeated their good performance in the classification round by beating Liaoning of China again in 75 minutes, collecting the first ever medal in Taipei’s volleyball history at the Asian men’s club volleyball.
Chinese Taipei found themselves more motivated to win the match than their opponents. The first set saw Liaoning in the lead 13-9 with attacks and block, when the Power team started to build up the attacks, narrowing the scores to 19-18. The players of Liaoning committed several mistakes that allowed their rivals to win the set by 25-22.
The second set was very competitive as both teams were trying their best to gain more points till they drew 19-19, finally Chinese Taipei came on time to win the crucial points and win the set 25-23.
After 7-7 in the third set, Power got back their rhythm and succeeded to improve their defense and block to regain the lead at the second technical time out 16-11. Liaoning tried hard, made substitutions, and asked for time outs but could not narrow the points difference. Power won the set 25-13 and the match 3-0 in 75 minutes.
“We had enough confidence in the match against Liaoning because we had beaten them and also to concentrate on the third place and that is what we succeeded, but generally I’m not satisfied with our rank. We should be among top 4 teams" Chinese Taipei head coach Yu Ching-Fang said.
Coach of China team Sui Shensheng said, “We did not work well. All my players did good performance but Chinese Taipei players were better than us, especially in defence and persistence in defence.”
Almaty of Kazakhstan clinched the 5th position after beating Toyoda Gosei Trefuef of Japan 3-1 (25-20, 17-25, 25-17,25-23) in a thrilling encounter.
South Gas club of Iraq fought well against India’s Natural Gas Cooperation 3-2 (25-23, 25-27, 25-20,22-25.15-8) due to the efforts of their efficient spikers Mustedanovic Armin and Nasser Aseel who sent their sharp spikes from all directions.
Results for Final day
Gold medal match: IRI vs. QAT 3-0 (25-22, 25-17, 25-21)