Serbian power! Balkans obtain their sixth win in a row at the World Championship


Varna, Bulgaria, September 22, 2018 - Serbia continued with their brilliant performance and achieved sixth win in a row at the 2018 FIVB World Championship! The Balkans overpowered Argentina in straight-sets 3-0 (25-18, 25-22, 25-22) in the Palace of Culture and Sports. With this victory Serbia topped the Pool H with 17 points before the match of the second placed team Poland against France later today. 

The legendary coach of Argentina Julio Velasco was suspended from today’s match following his offensive gesture during the previous game of his team against Poland last night. Without Velasco on the bench, the European squad started the match pretty well and took a 3-point advantage (16-13). A few minutes later Sebastian Sole was brilliant near the net and stopped Marko Ivovic with a perfect monster block to make the result 17-20. In the end Petar Krsmanovic did a great job from the service line and after another huge block by Ivovic, the Balkans won the opening set by 25-18. 

In the second set the Argentinians managed to come back with a good block and were 2 points ahead by 15-13. The Serbian head coach Nikola Grbic then took a time-out. After the pause his players made two blocks in a row, Cristian Poglajen did an unforced error in attack and the Balkans took back the lead (16-15). Srecko Lisinac secured a huge 4-point advantage with a powerful ace (21-17) and Serbia won the second set by 25-22. 

Despite the difficult first two sets, Argentina started to play better in the third one and took huge 6-point advantage by 17-11. In the next minutes Nikola Grbic’s players reduced the unforced errors and with good black-defense managed to come back (18-19). In the end Drazen Luburic destroyed the Argentinian reception with powerful serving and Serbia won the match after 25-22 in the third set. 

Drazen Luburic topped the list of the scorers with 14 points. For Argentina Cristian Poglajen finished with 10. 

This is a fourth consecutive win for the Europeans versus this opponent in the history of this major volleyball event. The Balkans have won all three previous World Championship meetings with Argentina by 3-1 (2006, 2010 and 2014).