Dawid Konarski (3), Jakub Kochanowski (15) and Michal Kubiak (13) at the block as Poland and Brazil prepare to renew their World Championship rivalry at the 2019 VNL
Lausanne, Switzerland, June 2, 2019 – Scoring leaders Dawid Konarski and Wallace De Souza will head their squads as they revive the World Championship finals rivalry of Poland and Brazil at the 2019 FIVB Volleyball Nations League.
Poland’s Konarski leads Poland with 37 points, while Wallace heads Brazilian scoring with 35 markers.
The match will be a replay of the 2018 World Championship final, where Poland beat Brazil in straight sets to capture back-to-back titles.
These two squads also previously met at the finals in two other editions of the World Championships. The first one was in 2006 when Brazil won in straight sets and the second encounter was in 2014 when Poland claimed the title with a four-set victory.
The Poland-Brazil rivalry will continue to decide which team will top Pool 3, starting at 17.00 local time at the Spodek Arena in Katowice.
Poland and Brazil both posted five-set triumphs on Saturday against the United States and Australia, respectively, to keep their 2-0 winning start on the first week of action.
“We could have lost this game but were able to celebrate eventually with a win,” Poland player Grzegorz Lomacz said. “Every game is a different story so we didn’t treat it as a revenge for the World Championship. Tomorrow we will play against Brazil and we will fight for a win.”
“We are on our way, we need time to reach our level,” Brazil coach Marcelo Fronckowiak said. “We decided to change the team and we have to pay the price for that. However, we obtained victory and that is what’s important.”
Prior to this encounter in Pool 3, Australia and USA meet at 14.00. Jordan Richards and top server Samuel Walker will lead Australia, while Torey De Falco and middle blocker Mitchell Stahl head the USA frontline.
Jiangmen once again opens the day’s action with the matchup of Germany and unbeaten Iran in Pool 1. Germany’s leading scorer Simon Hirsch will go head-to-head with Iran’s most prolific hitter and scorer Amir Ghafour and top playmaker Saeid Marouf at 16.00 local time.
In the other Pool 1 matchup, Italy will try to complete their recovery after losing their first match with another win. The European side will face winless China at 20:00. They will rely on the consistent performance of Gabriele Nelli who is tied with Ghafour and Russia’s Egor Kliuka in the best scorer category with a total of 39 points in two outings.
The encounter between Portugal and Bulgaria in Pool 2 will start at 16.10 local time, followed final match on the first week between Argentina and Canada at 19:10.
The host team is counting on home court advantage to sweep all matches in Mendoza before they fly to Tokyo for Pool 7 play with Japan, Iran and Brazil.
In Novi Sad, France are looking for a sweep of Pool 4 when they face Japan in the first match at 16.00 local time.
The European side has won more matches than any other team in the VNL and they want to continue their good run with a win against Japan on Sunday. Jean Patry leads the offence, while Jenia Grebennikov is the top defender for France. However, Japan will be a difficult opponent, especially with three players – Issei Otake, Masahiro Yanagida and Yuki Ishii – who are read to step up for their squad at any time.
An all-European matchup will follow featuring Russia and Serbia at 19.00. The Russians are trying to come up with back-to-back wins, while Serbia is looking for a stop in their losing slump.
All VNL matches will be available live and on-demand on Volleyball TV
June 2 – full schedule: