2018 FIVB Men’s Volleyball Nations League
- May 25-July 8, 2018
Poland and the United States are the last two undefeated teams, each moving to 4-0 with very different results on Friday.
Poland moved past France in a sweep, while United States had to rally for a five-set win over Japan, finagling its lineup to spark the comeback victory. The Polish side holds the upper hand between the teams with the maximum 12 points with three sweeps and a four-set victory over Canada. The Americans check in with 10 points due to Friday’s five setter and a similar come-from-behind five-set result against Argentina to open the tournament.
Brazil is waiting in the wings in third place at 3-1, but also boasts 10 points. Russia, France and Italy also sit at 3-1, with the Russians and French boasting nine points and Italy sitting in sixth place with eight points.
On the other end of the spectrum are Argentina, Australia and South Korea who are both still winless in VNL play.
Only two of Friday’s eight matches were decided in sweeps, while three went the distance: Serbia over Bulgaria, USA over Japan and Iran over Argentina.
The day also brought a standout performance by China’s Chuan Jiang, who posted a match-high 24 points in a loss to Germany. Serbia’s Drazen Luburic and Bulgaria’s Todor Skrimov each turned in 20 point efforts in their five-set battle.
Here’s a look at what happened on Friday:
No. 3 Poland takes on 20th-ranked China (1-3) on Saturday, while the No. 2 USA faces No. 21 South Korea. The Americans face their biggest set on Sunday, battling World No. 1 Brazil.
Also in Saturday’s action, No. 6 Canada (2-2) takes on No. 7 Argentina (0-4), which is looking to rebound after a five-setter with No. 8 Iran Friday night. No. 9 France (3-1) faces No. 10 Germany (1-3).