Canada beats Iran, looks ahead to playing Bulgaria

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Canada defeated Iran 3-2 (25-20, 20-25, 25-15, 23-25, 15-12) in an exciting five-set match today at the 2018 FIVB Men’s World Championship.

Both Iran and Canada needed all the points they could get today – Iran will not advance, and despite the win, Canada needed a full three points from a 3-0 or 3-1 victory to increase its chances of advancing.

In the match today, Canada’s team captain Gord Perrin accumulated 31 points; and Nick Hoag 27, including four aces. Amir Ghafour led Iran in scoring, finishing with 24 points.

“Gord played an unbelievable game, and Nick of course,” said Canada’s head coach Stephane Antiga.

Canada started the World Championship with three wins, but then faced powerhouses Brazil, France and the U.S.  “I really like the character and behaviour of our team after three consecutive losses; fighting again and to unleash it again, that was very positive. We played very well. I am satisfied with the game and the victory. It does hurt that we don’t have a chance to advance; it really hurts.”

Tomorrow, Canada will play host Bulgaria in the feature match of the evening.

“To play the host team is something special, and it’s always something important to beat a home team in front of thousands of fans,” said Antiga.

Perrin, who didn’t play earlier this year in Volleyball Nations League due to injury recovery, was also happy with the result today.

“Tonight we were able to put together a big game… I’m happy my team was able to play well after a string of tough matches, and now we look forward to tomorrow.”

At the end of the second round, that is currently being played in four cities in Italy and Bulgaria, the rankings of the four pools will be drawn up taking into account the points scored by each team from the beginning of the tournament. The four pool-winning teams of the second stage will access the third stage, together with the top two of the second ranked teams.

Roster:
#1 TJ Sanders, London, ON
#2 Gord Perrin, Creston, BC
#3 Steven Marshall, Abbotsford, BC
#4 Nicholas Hoag, Sherbrooke, QC
#5 Lucas Van Berkel, Edmonton, AB
#7 Stephen Maar, Aurora, ON
#8 Jay Blankenau, Sherwood Park, AB
#9 Jason DeRocco, Winnipeg, MB
#10 Sharone Vernon-Evans, Scarborough, ON
#11 Daniel Jansen VanDoorn, Langley, BC
#16 Ryan Sclater, Port Coquitlam, BC
#17 Graham Vigrass, Calgary, AB
#18 Blair Bann, Edmonton, AB
#20 Arthur Szwarc, Toronto, ON

Staff:
Head coach: Stephane Antiga
Assistant coach: Dan Lewis
Team manager: Julien Boucher
Therapists: Melissa Healy, Luc Campbell
Statistician: Lionel Bonnaure

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