Baku, June 15, AZERTAC
Bulgaria blasted their way past Russia with a powerful display in Crystal Hall 1 to record their first win of Baku 2015. The shock win means world No5 Russia have now lost their opening two matches at the European Games.
Bulgaria won 3-0 by claiming the first set 25-16, before staging an impressive comeback from a seven-point deficit to win the second set 25-22.
They then wrapped up the Pool B game with a 25-22 final set as they dominated their Russian rivals.
“After losing our first game, we were more motivated and worked hard to get the win”, said Hristina RUSEVA (BUL), who scored 17 points for her team.
“Russia's organisation was very good but we found a way to beat them. We prepared well by watching lots of videos of them and figuring out their tactics. Beating a strong team like Russia gives us a lot of confidence.”
In the morning’s Pool A match, Turkey dominated Italy throughout to claim a straight-forward victory in three sets.
Cheered on by the crowd, Turkey bounced back from their opening day defeat by Poland to overcome the Italians with an aggressive attacking display, winning the three sets 25-16, 25-10 and 25-17.
"We served very well and our defence was very strong, which helped us win the game. Italy have brought a young team, but they are always a strong rival, so this was a great win ", said Guldeniz ONAL PASALIOGLIU (TUR).
Some wayward finishing cost Italy during the game and their head coach Fabio SOLI (ITA) believes his young team's inexperience was a factor.
"When you start feeling unsure, you tend to overdo things and this is what happened to us. This is very normal for young players", he said.
In Pool A, Turkey will next play Belgium and Italy will take on Azerbaijan. In Pool B, Bulgaria will play Serbia, while Russia will match up against Croatia.