In last year’s tournament, USA defeated Poland in straight sets in both the preliminary round and the final round.
Poland led on all fronts against Australia, including the 11 blocks and nine service winners, while USA lost in straight sets after suffering from 29 turnovers against Brazil.
“It’s never fun to lose,” USA coach John Speraw
said. “There are some specific areas of the game we weren’t good at tonight. Regardless of whether we were young and inexperienced – I want them to play and compete better.”
Meanwhile, Brazil are seeking to claim back-to-back wins in Katowice, where they will play Australia at 14.00 local time.Ricardo Lucarelli
’s return in the line-up is a positive development for the South American side as he helped his squad with the opening win by scoring all his 14 points from piercing spikes on Friday.
In Pool 1, an all-European clash between Italy and Germany will take place in the second day’s opening match at 16.00 local time in Jiangmen.
The Germans are counting on balance in scoring following their 3-2 win against China on opening day, when five of their starting unit delivered double-digit outputs. The Italians, on the other hand, are banking on their young hitter Gabriele Nelli
and their ace playmaker Simone Giannelli
to recover from their 3-1 loss to Iran.
Hosts China will meet their Asian rivals Iran in the second match at 20.00. Like last year, Chuan Jiang
is spearheading the scoring for China, while Saeid Marouf
is brilliantly directing plays for the Iranian side.
Canada and Portugal are scheduled to play at 18.00 local time in Mendoza in the Pool 2 tournament. Both squads are seeking their first win, after losing their respective opening matches on Friday. In the other matchup, Argentina are facing Bulgaria at 21.10 to decide leadership in the group.
Bulgaria’s Nikolay Uchikov
delivered a power-packed performance on the first day, with 27 points from 23 attacks and three blocks.
In Pool 4 at Novi Sad, Japan are looking for their second win, while Russia are seeking to bounce back after losing to France on opening day. Japan and Russia will play at 16.00 local time, and then Serbia will face France at 19.00.
Among the notable performances in Pool 4 are Jennia Grebennikov’s
high-energy defensive performance as he dominates the best digger category and Yuki Ishikawa
’s 19 points against Serbia that made him the third best attacker so far in the tournament.
All VNL matches will be available live and on-demand on Volleyball TV
June 1 – full schedule: