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Sabbi subs in to bring Italy dramatic win at Brazil

This time the enthusiastic Brazilian fans could not stop Italy on the way to victory
Cuiba, Brazil, July 3, 2015 – Giulio Sabbi turned out to be the golden substitution for the Italian team, which persevered through a 40-point tie-breaker to overpower Brazil in the second leg of their double header.  Sabbi came out on court during the second set and stayed on among Italy’s main line-up for the next three to contribute 19 points to his team’s 3-2 (21-25, 29-27, 21-25, 25-19, 21-19) well-deserved victory and become the best scorer of the game.

Through the most part of the first set, the two teams played level, putting on a heavy fight for every point.  It was only in the conclusive moments of the set that Brazil managed to open a wider gap before winning it by 25-21.  The second set was quite a rollercoaster ride with the advantage taking wide swings back and forth.  Italy looked sure to tie the match before they wasted the three consecutive set points they had at 24-21.  Pressure from the stands made the Italians commit serving errors at the next two set points they had, but finally the drama was over as they closed it off at 29-27.

Brazil took the lead at the very beginning of the third set and never let it go.  Keeping control of the scoreboard, the home guys hammered out another 25-21 to step ahead once again.  They took this momentum into the beginning of the fourth set, but the Italians recovered quickly.  It was their turn to dominate and so they did through the end of the set, which came at 25-19 in their favour to set up a tie-breaker.

Italy pushed on to maintain a slight edge in the fifth set, but the 11,000 roaring fans brought Brazil back on their feet at 13-13.  It was only the beginning of a long ending.  The fierce battle on the court continued for another 14 rallies and ended with a successful block by the European team that finished it all off at 21-19.

To see the match gallery, read the full match live commentary and post-match comments, visit the match page.


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