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Sheikh Saoud bin Abdulrahman Al Thani (right), Secretary General of the Qatar Olympic Committee (QOC) and Ary Graça, President of the Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB) pose for a picture yesterday. The FIVB officials are in Doha for the 2012 FIVB Club World Championships which ends today. The competition has been organised by the Qatar Volleyball Association (QVBA). Sheikh Saoud stressed that the QOC are happy to co-operate and co-ordinate with the FIVB in the future. Sheikh Saoud also wished Graça all the best in his new role as President of the FIVB and thanked him for selecting Doha to be his first destination after he was elected.
BY DENZIL PINTO
DOHA: The defending champions of the men’s and women’s categories edged closer to retaining their title after comprehensive wins in the semi-finals of the FIVB Club World Championships yesterday.
In the men’s category, Trentino Diatec of Italy were impressive from the first whistle and boosted by Zenit Kazan’s mistakes, the three-time champions registered a 3-0 (25-14, 25-20, 25-14) win at Aspire Dome.
The Italian side will face Sada Cruzeiro of Brazil in today’s final, who edged past PGE Skra 3-2 (25-21,23-25, 25-27, 15-9) in a five-set thriller.
In the women’s category, last year’s champions Rabita Baku underlined their title credentials by crushing Fenerbahce of Turkey 3-0 (25-18, 25-20, 25-16).
Rabita will face Brazil’s Sollys Nestle in today’s final, after defeating Lancheras of Puerto Rico in straight-sets (25-15, 25-13, 25-15).
Two spikes and blocks from Matey Kaziyski led Trentino to an 8-5 lead in the first set. The Italian side were soon 17-9 up, which forced a time-out from Zenit’s coach Vladimir Alenko.
Alenko’s team-talk made no difference, as Trentino continued to dominate.
Kaziyski served an ace to add to his team’s tally at 20-10, before Evgeny Sivozhelez responded for Zenit.
After holding an 11-point lead at 22-11 at one stage, Trentino took the first set when Maxim’s Mikhaylov spike went too long.
Jan Stokr continued his scoring form in the second set helping Trentino take a two-point advantage at 14-12. At 16-14, a spike from Mikhaylov and Alexander Abrosimov levelled the score at 16-all.
At 20-all Trentino’s coach Radostin Stoytchev called for a time-out, and his team responded taking a three-point lead at 23-20. A mistake by Mikhaylov gave Trentino a two-set lead.
At 10-4 up in the third set, the Trentino players showed their attacking abilities with Stokr grabbing the winners.
Shortly after, Juanatorena contributed with two straight aces to help the Italian side claim the third set and match.
In the other men’s semi-final, after one-set all, Sada took the third when Mauricio Borges blocked Michel Winiarski’s attempt.
PGE Skra came back from 8-3 down to level the score at 20-all.
Aleksandar Atanasijevic and Winiarski helped PGE Skra to lead 24-23, before Daniel Plinski claimed the set-point to ensure the match went into a decider.
Sada led 8-7 thanks to Wallace De Souza’s spike. Sada opened a three-point lead at 11-8.
Later, errors by Atanasijevevic and Maurius Wlazly allowed Sada to claim victory.
In the women’s category, Sollys Nestle took control of the first set with five consecutive points at 21-11. Despite contributions from Lancheras’ Yarimar Rosa and Del Valle, Solly’s Nestle wrapped up the set at 25-15.
Sollys Nestle dominated the second set.
De Moura’s side continued to press forward, and despite Lancheras’ attempts to rally back, the Brazilian club took a two-set lead. In the third set, Sollys Nestle had a six-point lead at 8-2 at the first technical time-out.
Lancheras reduced the deficit thanks to Rosa and Jessica Jones at 10-7.
Ivna Marra continued adding to her team’s tally and gave Sollys Nestle set point, which the Brazilian club later claimed.
In the second women’s semi-final, Madelaynne Montano and Foluke Akinradewo helped Rabita to lead 19-15.
After the lead increased to five points at 21-16, Akinradewo added two winners before Monatano claimed the first set.
Unforced errors from both teams allowed Rabita take the second set 25-20.
Rabita later claimed the third set 25-16, much to the delight of the players. THE PENINSULA