Tehran crowd inspire Argentina for 3-0 win over Serbia


Sebastian Sole of Argentina spikes opposite the block of Serbia's Srecko Lisinac and Drazen Lubiric in Tehran.

Tehran, Iran, July 2, 2016 - Serbia suffered their second straight defeat, in Group 1 of the FIVB World League, going down 3-0 (25-23, 25-22, 25-20) to Argentina, who were supported by a partisan Iran crowd.

The match opened with Serbia taking an early 6-1 lead. But the Iranian fans repeatedly raised the name of former Iran and now Argentina coach Julio Velasco in support of the South Americans, who rallied to take 13-11 lead. Serbia coach Nikola Garbic called his players out to stop the flow of the game, but Serbia were still two points down at the second techical time out. The European side were giving away points on unforced errors -eight in total in total in the first set- as the confident spikes of Cristian Poglajen widened the gap for Argentina 19-16 before an exciting finish at 25-23.

With Velasco still carrying the applause of the crowd, Argentina were decisively leading the second set 6-2 forcing Garbic to bring on reserve setter Aleksa Brdjovic -though Argentina were still ahead by four at the first technical time-out. Uros Kovacevic stepped up to allow Serbia to tie at 11-11, but at the second technical time out Argentina were back in the lead by two. Serbia could not reduce the margin and Argentina closed the set 25-22.

The third set was a copy of the second, with Argentina showing improvement in attack and reception, while capitalising on consecutive errors by Serbia. Garbic called a time out as his team trailed 2-6 and his three substitutions failed to turn the tide as Argentina decisively took the set 25-20.


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