2017 WORLD GRAND CHAMPIONS CUP
- Women – September 5-9
- Men – September 12-17
- Nagoya and Osaka, Japan
- Women – Schedule/Results
- Men – Schedule
- Power Rankings
- Day 1
Day 2 of the WGCC is packed with action, as Team USA takes on Iran, one of the most exciting teams of the world, behind Saeid Marouf’s amazing play. Also, Brazil will take on Italy, on a rematch of Rio’s Olympic game finals. Below, you’ll find FIVB’s preview for the day’s matches.
Team USA x Iran
Both USA and Iran won their first matches at the 2017 FIVB Men’s World Grand Champions Cup in Japan and will be looking to add a second victory to their records as they face each other on Wednesday.
On November 23, 2013, Iran beat USA 3-2 in these nations’ only previous meeting at the World Grand Champions Cup. These teams’ most recent meeting at world level came at the 2017 World League, when USA recorded a 3-0 (25-17, 25-22, 30-28) win. Iran last beat USA in a competitive match on June 21, 2015, when they won 3-0 in the 2015 World League.
USA has won two matches in a row at a major competition only once in 2017 – beating Italy and Russia in the World League last June. That was also the last time they won two matches in a row in straight sets. Iran can win the first two matches of a global major competition for the first time since the 2014 World Championship, when they beat Italy and USA, the same opponents as in the first two matches of this year’s World Grand Champions Cup. Four of Iran’s five wins at the World Grand Champions Cup have come in five sets. Iran has won four of their last five World Grand Champions Cup matches, only losing 0-3 against Russia in 2013.
Brazil x Italy
After shutting out World League winners France on the first competition day, Brazil will be looking to defeat another European powerhouse, Italy, on the second. This will be a rematch of Rio’s Olympic games finals. We don’t expect it to exciting though, as Italy is missing some important players for this tournament, and are nowhere as good as they were one year ago.
Brazil has lost only one of their last 18 World Grand Champions Cup matches, the 2-3 defeat against Russia in 2013. After losing the final of the 2017 World League against France, Brazil have now won their next six competitive matches at the South American Championship and the World Grand Champions Cup. They last won seven in a row in the 2016 World League.
Italy started the World Grand Champions Cup with a 2-3 defeat against Iran. It was the first time they lost their first match of the tournament. After winning their first seven matches at the World Grand Champions Cup, Italy have now lost six of their next nine in this competition. They have lost the last six of their last eight matches in major competitions that went into deciding fifth sets.
Japan x France
Both Japan and France lost their first matches in Japan and will be looking for their first victory as they meet on Wednesday in Nagoya. This will be their first ever encounter in the history of the Grand Champions Cup. France has won nine of their last 10 matches against Japan at world level, with the 0-3 Olympic qualification defeat in these nations’ most recent meeting on June 5, 2016 as the only exception.
Japan’s historic record in the WGCC doesn’t give it much hope, as they became the first team to lose eight consecutive matches at with yesterday’s loss. They have not won a set in their last five matches.