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15 August 2011 | in Volleyball, Summer Universiade

2011 SU Update: Brazil Shine against Israel


SHENZHEN - In the grand Shenzhen Gymnasium on Monday afternoon, before a crowd of 1,000 spectators eager to support the beauty of volleyball instead of one particular opponent, the men’s national team of Brazil beat Israel 3-1. In this match between the two favorites in group C,Israel started out as the stronger team, canceling out Brazil’s traditionally strong attacking line. Their inspired servers and even better reception led them to a six point lead that Brazil threatened only once (22-21) through three straight block points. However, their concentration wavered, the Israelis stepped up the pace and grabbed the first set 25-22.

Brazil’s serve and quick thinking at the net dominated set number two, giving them a comfortable lead of 16-6 at the second technical timeout. The duo Carbonera and Souza gave the Israeli team quite a headache, and it was clear that allBrazilneeded to do was keep their concentration. Apart fromBrazil’s dominance, it was the dedication and passion of both teams in their battle to save and dive for every ball, every point. It took a while, but Brazil’s feared block line finally kicked into gear, giving the South American team four points in a row and pushing them toward an easy second set win - 25-10.

In the third set, Israel were keen not to let Brazil control the rhythm of play like in set number two, and the Israelis came in with a mixture of quality attack and defense. It wasBrazil’s outside hitter Souza who kept his team in check and in touch with the scoreline. The points were much closer than in the first two sets, with both teams doing their best to tip the momentum their way. Unfortunately, service errors and fumbling at the net by group C leaders Israel, led Brazil to a five point lead which they didn’t let slip, finishing off the third set 25-21.

Their confidence fully restored, ’Os Cariocas’, as the Brazilian national team is popularly called, charged into set four with spectacular serves, especially noted were the ones by Alves and Souza. Throughout the match,Israelhad sparks of brilliance, at the net and in the field, but they proved not to be enough to change the rhythm of the match, which the Brazilians controlled from the second set on. Near the end of set four, Brazilian coach Leonaldo made a couple of changes, letting the less experienced players try there hand at the Israeli team. However, for the lest few points, he switched back to 5/6 of his starting line-up, the group that powered though the Israeli defense and came back from the loss of the first set. With a phenomenally-placed strike, top scorer Fontanales put an end to the game, 25-18. Point, set, match and top of the group -Brazil.


(Source: FISU Young Reporter Sonja Nikcevic/Serbia)