Canada opens World League Final against Russia


Louis Daignault (ISN)

July 17, 2013, MAR DEL PLATA, Argentina (ISN) – Canada will make its historic debut in the six-country FIVB World League Final men’s volleyball tournament on Thursday against Russia, the Olympic champions.

The Canadians reached the final by placing first in group C during the preliminary round with a record of eight wins and two losses and they enter the Final riding a six-match winning streak. In the prelims Canada split two-match series with the Netherlands in Quebec City and Portugal in Mississauga before sweeping South Korea, again in Mississauga, as well as Finland and Japan overseas.

“Of course, we’re ecstatic about being here,” said Canada’s head coach Glenn Hoag. “We have a young team and this is our first year in the building towards the Rio Olympics and the guys are getting a great experience. The hard work continues as we play some of the top teams in the world.

In the Final, Canada is in a poweful group with the Russians and world number-one Brazil. The other group is comprised of world number-three Italy, Bulgaria (#8) and Argentina (#9).

The Russians ranked second in Group B in the preliminary round although they tied with Italy with seven wins and three losses for 19 points. Brazil, seeking a 10th world League title, ran away with Group A posting a 9-1 record for 25 points,

“We know we are going to have two very tough matches,” said Brazil’s head coach Bernardo Rezende. “Canada has done a great job this year to be here.”

The tournament opens Wednesday with a rematch of the Olympic final between Russia and Brazil.

Sportsnet will carry both of Team Canada’s round robin matches live as well as the semis and championship match. Here is the broadcast schedule. All matches will also be streamed on FIVB WEB TV 

World League Finals

Russia vs. Canada

Thursday, July 18th @16:30 EST live on Sportsnet One; Encore 21:00 EST on Sportsnet One

Canada vs. Brazil

Friday, July 19th @15:30 EST live on Sportsnet One; Encore 21:00 EST on Sportsnet One

Semi-Final #1

Saturday, July 20th – live on Sportsnet One @ 15:30 EST

Semi Final #2

Saturday, July 20th – live on Sportsnet One @ 19:00 EST

Final (#1 vs #2)

Sunday, July 21st – live on Sportsnet One @ 19:00 EST

Final (#3 vs #4)

Sunday, July 21st – tape delayed on Sportsnet One @ 21:30 EST


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Team Canada roster for 2013 FIVB World League Final men’s volleyball tournament:

Players: Dustin Schneider, Brandon, Man.; Josh Howatson, Victoria; Louis-Pierre Mainville, Notre-Dame-de-l’Ile-Perrot, Que.; Dallas Soonias, Red Deer, Alta.; Gavin Schmitt, Saskatoon; Blair Bann, Edmonton; Dan Lewis, Oakville, Ont.; Fred Winters, Victoria; Gord Perrin, Creston, B.C.; Toon Van Lankvelt, River, Man.; Jason Derocco, East St. Paul, Man.; Rudy Verhoeff, Calgary; Justin Duff, Winnipeg; Adam Simac, Ottawa; Graham Vigrass, Calgary.

Head coach: Glenn Hoag, Sherbrooke, Que.

Assistant coaches: Vincent Pichette, Gatineau, Que.; Georges Laplante, Montreal.

Team manager : Julien Boucher, Quebec City

Statistician: Murat Haktanir, Izmir, Turkey

Physiotherapist : Mathieu Seguin, Hawkesbury, Ont.