Ghafour wreak havoc on Argentine defence to command Iranian victory
• Iran will now travel to Lodz to continue Pool E play.
• Iran’s skills and courage will be tested when they face hosts Poland in Lodz on Saturday, September 13.
• Amir Ghafour top scored with 17 points, while team-mates Seyed Mohammad Mousavi Eraghi and M. Mojtaba Mirzajanpour charted 16 and 14 points, respectively.
• Iran outscored Argentina in attacks 51-33, blocks 11-5, service aces 4-2.
Iran made a solid display in the first set as they cruised to an 8-3 lead at the first technical timeout. The Iranian led 18-11 then coach Slobodan Kovac decided to give his star setter Mir Saied Marouflakrani and middle blocker Seyed Mohammad Mousavi Eraghi some relief from the tough plays with the Argentine side.
Mehdi Mahdavi and Armin Tashakori came in the match but the impact was not as strong as Seyed and Marouf’s presence. Nonetheless, the Iranians still finished with a commanding lead in the first set 25-15.
Iran took command of the first technical timeout of the second set 8-6 but a tight point-by-point exchange ensued until the second technical timeout, where Argentina finally took the advantage. Argentina scored two more points that forced Kovac to call a timeout at 18-15. Argentina led 21-19, when Seyed took matters to his own hands on offence and defence to fuel a comeback and the eventual win for Iran 25-23.
Iran dictated the pace in the third set with an 8-2 and 16-10 leads at the technical breaks. Argentina defenders made a good effort to put the ball back in play that saw Luciano De Cecco with a solo block to cut down the Iranian advantage 18-14. Iran kept a firm grip of their advantage and steadily closed the set 25-15.