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Russia qualify for semis with Swiss win

Montreux, Switzerland, May 30, 2024 - World champions Russia obtained the 3-0 (25-19, 25-13, 25-25) victory against hosts Switzerland they needed to advance to the semifinals and in the process knock title holders Brazil out of the tournament. Yana Shscherban contributed with 16 points the needed kills against Mandy Wigger (13 points) and Switzerland.

The question in the first game of the last day of pool play wasn’t if Switzerland or Russia would pass to the semifinals, but Brazil or Russia. After the big game between the two big rivals, the world champions had the opportunity to finish second or first in Pool B and kick the title holder out of the tournament.

Hosts Switzerland, on the other hand, had no chance to qualify for the semifinals, but could cook the Russians’ goose if they would win at least one set or only lose by differential of 23 points. All Brazilian hopes relied on Timo Lippuner’s team.

The Swiss side made an effort and kept the game tight in the beginning of the set, the number of unforced errors were kept low. However, at 17-17 the Swiss started to become nervous and committed unforced errors. Coach Lippuner tried to calm his players down, but the Russian took advantage of this down and won the first set by 25-19; an important first win for Yuri Marichev’s players.

Russia started with self-confidence in the second set. Switzerland, on the other hand, proved sometimes a certain lack of concentration in the own game: Lippuner’s players couldn’t score on some easy balls and committed errors in the own reception and defensive game. Russia said a thank you and won the set clearly by 25-13. As a consequence, Switzerland needed to win the third set or lose only by 21-25 to stop the Russian dreams of the semifinals.

Hope dies last, says an old proverb. So the Brazilian national team, who was sitting in the stands, hoped that the Swiss would find the way back into the rhythm of the first set. However, it was a hard set for the Brazilian nerves. The Russian got the early lead they needed. In the course of time, Yury Marichev’s players even outscored the host. The title holder had to abandon all his hope for the semi-finals as Russia won the last set by 25-15.

As a consequence of the final ratio, the Russian national team passed to the semifinals at the Montreux Volley Masters, with the Brazilian title holder out of the race for the trophy.


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