Gdansk, Poland, September 5, 2014 – A confident-looking Canadian squad defeated Egypt in straight sets (25-14, 25-19, 25-22) in Pool C of the FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship at the Ergo Arena on Friday. This brings Canada’s record to two wins in three games; improving the team’s chances of moving forward to the next stage of the tournament.
The Canadians overwhelmed the Egyptians, who are winless in this first round of the Worlds, in blocking (9-2) and service aces (8-3). Gavin Schmitt of Saskatoon, Sask., had another impressive game, scoring 17 points today.
“It was a good match – we came out very aggressive and put a lot of pressure on them, forcing them into a lot of mistakes,” said Schmitt. “They changed their line-up in the third, and they played like they had nothing to lose. We had to come together a bit at the end to pull that one out.”
Canada looked dominant for most of the match, but in the third both teams fought hard to even up the score several times in the set. Egypt’s captain Saleh Youssef led their attack, and an effective serve by Hossam Abdalla gave the lead to his team at 16-15. The score was tied at 21, but a service ace in the 3-1 run by Canada ended the set and match 25-22.
Nick Hoag (Sherbrooke, QC) and Gord Perrin (Creston, BC) each scored 10 points for Canada today.
“For the most part it was a good match, a focused match, and I was very happy with that,” said Canada’s head coach Glenn Hoag. “In the third set, Egypt came back to a normal formation, with very expert players, and put some pressure on us to play well until the end…. We lost our focus a little bit, but re-gained it, which was nice. Now we can turn the page and look at Mexico tomorrow.”
Canada began this week with a three-set loss to Russia, but was bolstered by a five-set win in a battle with Bulgaria on Wednesday. Tomorrow, Canada faces Mexico, winless in two and playing Russia, ranked number two in the world, tonight in Gdansk.
“I’m very happy for the three points that we got today, that’s the most important thing and will help us toward our goal of making it into the next round and further,” said Canada’s captain, Fred Winters, during the post-match press conference. “What I can say about the game today is that it was very professional by us. We just knew what we had to do; I think our offense was really good today. We just took care of business and had a little slip in the third set, but overall we were able to recover… and we are looking forward to playing Mexico tomorrow.”
After tomorrow’s match, Canada plays China on Sept. 07 to wrap up this round of play.
The world’s best 24 teams are in Poland following a qualifying process, which started in 2012, involving a record number of 279 countries, and concluded in July 2014.
The full schedule and more at http://poland2014.fivb.org. Follow the timeline on twitter #FIVBMensWCH
In Canada and the U.S., matches are shown on the BeIN Sports channel or online at http://www.beinsportsconnect.tv/
Team Canada – 2014 World Men’s World Championship
# Name, Hometown
1 TJ Sanders, London, ON
18 Nicholas Hoag, Sherbrooke, QC
3 Dan Lewis, Oakville, ON
7 Dallas Soonias, Red Deer, AB
6 Justin Duff, Winnipeg, MB
8 Adam Simac, Ottawa, ON
9 Dustin Schneider, Brandon, MB
10 Toontje Van Lankvelt, Rivers, MB
12 Gavin Schmitt, Saskatoon, SK
15 Fred Winters, Victoria, BC
17 Graham Vigrass, Calgary, AB
2 Gord Perrin, Creston, BC
5 Rudy Verhoeff, Calgary, AB
22 Steve Marshall, Abbotsford, BC
Glenn Hoag, head coach
Vincent Pichette, assistant coach
Lawrence McKay, assistant coach
Jean-Sebastien Hartell (therapist)
Elvan Murat Haktanir, statistician
Julien Boucher, team manager
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