WCH Pool E Preview – RUS, ITA, FIN, And NED Are Ready To Battle It Out

  0 Liam Smith | September 20th, 2018 | International Volleyball, News, Previews & Recaps


Pool E Teams 

Matches Pts Sets Points
Rank Team W L W L Ratio W L Ratio
1  Italy 5 0 15 15 2 7.500 423 326 1.298
2  Netherlands 4 1 11 12 8 1.500 455 420 1.083
3  Russia 3 2 10 12 6 2.000 422 366 1.153
4  Finland 2 3 6 9 12 0.750 453 471 0.962

Pool Preview

Pool E will pit two of the world’s biggest volleyball powerhouses against each other, as Italy and Russia will measure forces in Assago. As only the top two of the second ranked teams of each pool will qualify for the third round, this means that the winner of this match-up gets a huge head-start and the loser will have to pray for the starts to align in the other 3 pools. Sadly for Finland and Netherlands, this means that they only have a very small punchers’ chance at advancing.

Story Lines To Watch

  • At the start of the tournament, we wrote in our Power Rankings that this was the perfect chance for Ivan Zaytsev to prove he is deserving of the diva treatment he demands in the Italian league. That is just what he is doing, as he is having having a crazy tournament, leading it in scoring, hitting (63%), and serving. His numbers are crazy, but Italy’s first phase pool toughest opponent was Belgium. Can Zaytsev keep it up against Russia?
  • Current VNL Champions, the Russian squad os running the risk of paying dearly for its strategy to let go of the throttle in the WCH’s first round. The team that broke the competition’s record for best set win, when it beat Tunisia 25-6, rested some players and ended up losing tie break wars to the USA and Serbia. Egor Kliuka is currently the team’s best performer, which means that Maxim Mikhaylov and Dmitry Musersky have some stepping up to do, specially since their biggest opponents, Italy, is playing at home.
  • The Netherlands team is the true giant killer of the tournament so far, with wins against France and Brazil during the first round. Can they continue its miracle run, and beat Russia and Italy? It seems impossible, but then again, so did its wins against the before mentioned squads.


21 Sep Netherlands  Russia
21 Sep Italy  Finland
22 Sep Netherlands  Finland
22 Sep Russia  Italy
23 Sep Russia  Finland
23 Sep Italy  Netherlands

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