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09/10/2019 22:00
ZAGREB beat YUZHNY 3-0 in #CLVolleyW Match of the Week
CEV Champions League Volley 2020

Luxembourg, October 9, 2019.  Mladost ZAGREB (CRO) have taken a big step towards reaching the third round of the CEV Champions League Volley 2020 - Women by beating Ukrainian champions Khimik YUZHNY in straight sets in the Match of the Week. The club have set the goal of reaching the group stage of the Champions League with both their men's and women's teams, and things are looking promising for the women's side. Two fairly comprehensive set wins put them in the right direction Wednesday night, and coming back from seven points down to win the third gave them the boost needed to travel to Ukraine for the return match next Tuesday with the utmost self-confidence. 

Mladost ZAGREB (CRO) vs. Khimik YUZHNY (UKR) 3-0 (25-17, 25-17, 27-25)

  • The crowd of 650 in Zagreb saw the home team delivering an emphatic start to the first two sets, both of them resulting in an 8-1 lead. They cruised to victory in those sets, 25-17 on both occasions. Khimik managed to close their gap halfway through the first set, but after a timeout, Mladost resumed their game with renewed confidence, scoring seven points in a row. 
  • Khimik YUZHNY gave it their all in the third set, forcing Mladost ZAGREB to the limit. The Ukrainian champions took a seven-point lead at 19-12, but saw the gap reduced towards the end of the set as Mladost responded with a 9-2 run. On the third match point, Khimik failed to hit the target and the win was for ZAGREB.
  • Four of Mladost's players scored more than ten points, the best performance was by Valentina Vrbanc who managed to put 17 to her name. 
  • YUZHNY's Yuliya Boyko was the only to keep close with 13 points.
  • The return match will be played on October 15 in Ukraine.

Saša Ivanišević, head coach of Mladost ZAGREB: “I congratulate my players. This is their victory. We started the match excellently, and we did everything as planned. I am very satisfied they have awarded themselves with a victory. We will approach the return match calmly, without too much euphoria.”

Iva Jurisic, team captain of Mladost ZAGREB: “I am beyond happy! This was our first official match this season, which we opened with a great victory in our very crowded home venue, Dom Odbojke Bojan Stranic.”

Dmitry Maryukhnich, assistant coach of Khimik YUZHNY: “The home team played an excellent game. Their attack stood out as particularly good. We started the match a bit nervously. We found our good play in the third set only, where we improved our defence and found some flaws in Mladost’s play. Unfortunately, that was not enough. We will analyse the match and prepare ourselves for the return game. Now we have to win as many as four sets, but I am convinced we will play a much better game having the support of our local crowd, and that we will get through to the next round.”
Daria Stepanovska, team captain of Khimik YUZHNY: “This is the first time ever we played against a Croatian team. We have much more information about them after this match. We will play the return at home and that will be a completely new game. We face the next match with great optimism.”

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