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Bulgaria endure tough Egyptian challenge in tiebreaker

Danail Milushev scored 20 points to help Bulgaria escape a tough five-setter against Egypt
Gdansk, Poland, September 6, 2014 – Bulgarian captain Todor Aleksiev and Danail Milushev led their team to overcome a tough five-setter against Egypt (25-22, 26-24, 23-25, 20-25, 15-11) in Pool C of the FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship at the Ergo Arena on Saturday. 

Key Points

• Bulgaria recovered just in time in the fifth set for their third victory in Pool C. 

• Bulgarian captain Todor Aleksiev topped all scorers with 25 points and got scoring support from Danail Milushev, who charted 20 points. 

• Egyptian opposite played excellently in the third and fourth sets contributed 20 points in a losing effort. 

• Four players scored five blocks in the match – Bulgarians Aleksiev and Svetoslav Gotsev, and Egyptians Saleh Youssef and Mohamed Abou Abd Elhalim. 

Egypt started with some setting blunders but the African team still led the first technical timeout 8-5. Bulgaria implemented an effective defence that stopped the Egyptian rampage. Aleksiev and Milushev led the Bulgarian offence that completed their move to take over the lead 20-17 until a powerful right-side attack by Miroslav Gradinarov drilled the Egyptian defence that sealed the first set victory for Bulgaria 25-22. 

Abdelhay continued with his fine plays that let the Egyptian team to keep up with the Bulgarian tempo. With another solid display of attacks, Aleksiev and Milushev intimidated the Egyptian defenders. Abdelhay had another chance to spark up a run for Egypt and succeeded with a 19-17 lead for his side. Bulgaria regained momentum to nail the score at 22-all. An intense rally ensued in between but Milushev’s powerful kill finished the set in favour of Bulgaria 26-24. 

Egypt showed more aggressiveness that extended the rallies, giving the Bulgarian attackers from scoring. Abdelhay unleashed fierce spikes that gave a two-point cushion for his side at 17-15 and 20-18. Aleksiev tried to end the set for Bulgaria but the Egyptians managed to seize victory in the third set 25-23. 

Egypt took the lead in the first technical timeout of the fourth set 8-6. Elhalim’s fine serves distracted the Bulgarian defenders that extended the Egyptian lead to 16-11. Egyptian captain Saleh Youssef scored three points in a row to gain control of the set 25-20. 

Egypt built a sizeable cushion early in the tiebreaker as the Bulgarians suffered a defensive meltdown. But Aleksiev’s and team-mates’ heroics brought the team back to tie the score at 6-all. Egypt suffered on some costly errors on the attack that allowed Bulgaria to spark a run until a Todor Skrimov closed the final set at 15-11 with an ace.


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