Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 13, 2016 - The big clash in Pool B on Saturday sees defending Olympic champions Russia take on World Champions Poland.
After their dramatic 3-1 loss to Argentina on August 8, Russia were able to clear their heads with a thumping 3-0 (25-11, 25-17, 25-9) victory over Egypt on August 11, but Saturday’s match against Poland will be Russia’s biggest test of the tournament so far.
Poland didn’t quite dominate Egypt as Russia had in their first match but still managed to win comfortably in three sets before a fiery 3-2 win over Iran on August 9. Poland also managed to beat Argentina 3-0 but will be hoping for shorter sets than the 37-35 finale against the Argentines.
The last time these two teams met was in the FIVB World League in June when Russia won 3-0 (25-22, 25-19, 25-22) and 3-1 (25-17, 25-20, 20-25, 25-15). However, Poland beat Russia four times in the 2015 World League and in the 2015 World Cup.
Grzegorz Lomacz is currently the top setter in the competition with Bartosz Kurek and Michal Kubiak fourth and seventh in the top scorers’ chart. Russia’s top scorer is Artem Volvich at No. 17 but they have two of the top four blockers in Volvich and Maxim Mickhaylov.