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Russia defeat Finland in European Men's Olympic Qualification Tournament opener

Russia defeated Finland in the opening match of the European Men's Olympic Qualification Tournament in Berlin, Germany
Lausanne, Switzerland, January 5, 2016 - Olympic champions Russia defeated Finland 3-0 (25-17, 25-16, 25-19) in the opening match in Pool B of the European Men's Olympic Qualification Tournament in Berlin, Germany. Russia will play France on Wednesday and Bulgaria on Thursday while Finland will play their second match of the tournament against Bulgaria on Wednesday, before playing France on Thursday.

Maxim Mikhailov, Russia’s top scorer with 15 points, said: “We did not know what to expect since Finland have come here with many players who were not on their roster at the European Championship last October. I wouldn’t call it an easy win even though the match finished in three sets. The best teams in the world are competing here, so we had a difficult match today and it is going to continue in the same way also for the remainder of the tournament.”

Team Finland’s captain Antti Siltala said: “You can’t be happy after losing a match in three sets. Halfway through each set, exactly where we should have stepped up our efforts, we somehow let it go. Of course Russia are a very strong opponent and they performed well in every fundamental. We now have to focus on tomorrow, this is going to be a very important match for us.”

Two matches will take place in Pool A later today. Belgium play Germany at 18.00 local time and Serbia meet world champions Poland at 20.30.

Click here for the full match schedule.
Click here for the competition website.
Click here for information on this week's Olympic Qualification Tournaments in Europe, South America, NORCECA and Africa.


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