2018 FIVB Men’s Volleyball Nations League – Week 2 / Pool 6
- June 1-3, 2018
- Goiania Arena; Goiania, Brazil
- Time Zone: UTC – 3; ET + 1
- World Rankings: No. 1 Brazil, No. 2 United States, No. 12 Japan, No. 21 South Korea
|Date||Time||Score||Set 1||Set 2||Set 3||Set 4||Set 5||Total||Report|
|1 Jun||12:15||Japan||–||United States||–||–||–||0–0|
|1 Jun||15:05||Brazil||–||South Korea||–||–||–||0–0|
|2 Jun||11:10||South Korea||–||United States||–||–||–||0–0|
|3 Jun||10:05||South Korea||–||Japan||–||–||–||0–0|
|3 Jun||12:40||Brazil||–||United States||–||–||–||0–0|
The United States is one of four undefeated teams at 3-0 after the opening week of Volleyball Nations League play. Brazil is right behind at 2-1, with seven points, having lost to Italy in five sets in its second match of the tournament. Japan also checks in at 2-1, but with just six points. South Korea is winless in the tournament.
Points are awarded in the following fashion: three for a win in three or four sets, two for a five-set win and one for a five-set loss.
Teams are playing for a spot in the Final Six, which includes the top five teams besides France, which is already guaranteed a spot as the host nation.
This pool features two of the 2016 Olympic medal winning teams in gold medalist Brazil and bronze medalist USA. Brazil is coming off a runner-up finish at the 2017 FIVB World League tournament, where the United States finished a disappointing fourth, falling to Canada in the bronze medal match.
The venue – Goiania Arena – in Brazil is one of the largest the men will play in during VNL play, and with a rabid volleyball fanbase, record crowds could be on hand for the action.
Stories to Follow
- On the court, the United States will have a different cast of characters with Olympians Matt Anderson, Micah Christenson and Aaron Russell back in the fold after resting on opening weekend. That also means the departure of three players – outside Taylor Sander, setter Jonah Seif and opposite Kyle Ensing. Sander, who was the USA’s top scorer on Week 1 (55 points, third overall) is said to be retuning to the USA for personal reasons.
- Wallace De Souza paced Brazil on opening weekend with 43 points (including 34 kills, 2nd among all players), with his nearest help coming from Mauricio Silva (32). Will he be asked to carry the load yet again for the Brazilian side and if so, will that be enough to lift them past other world powers?
- Yuji Nishida, who was one of three Japanese players named to the all-tournament team at the Asian Championships, posted 51 points to guide the team to a 2-1 finish last weekend. The serve of Masahiro Yanagida, who notched six aces last week, could also be key if Japan is going to pull some upsets.
- South Korea is 0-3 coming into the weekend. Star Lee Kang-Wong was not on the Week 1 roster. His presence will be much needed if the team is to break into the win column against such formidable foes on Week 2. Jae-Duck Seo carried the load with 30 points (26 kills, 3 aces, 1 block), but it was not enough.