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Argentina and Italy played a very thrilling quarter-final match

Ankara, Turkey, August 30, 2013 — Italy are the team that will face Brazil in one of Saturday’s semi-finals of the FIVB Volleyball Men's U21 World Championship in Ankara. In a thrilling quarterfinal match on Friday afternoon, th

For little, Argentina stood on the doors of a new semi-final of the Juniors' Men FIVB World Championship in Turkey. While Argentina played a great match v China, Italy had even a greater result defeating the title holder Serbia, even though they qualified for the Final Round of the best 16 teams as fourth in its pool.

Italy opened a four-point gap by the second tecnical time-out of the first set, but immediately after that Argentina scored 5 points in a row with Fernando Arpajou behind the serving line to take the lead. However, the South Americans could not hold on to it any longer as Italy reacted immediately to up their performance again and rush to a 25-20 win. Argentina’s lead in the second set went as wide as seven points at 13-6. Italy managed to catch up at 22-22, but did not find the strength to completely turn things around as Gonzalo Quiroga capitalised on the first set point with a successful block-out for 25-23.

In set three Argentina took advantage of Italy’s many unforced errors to establish control and win it by 25-20. Italy responded with an impressive 25-15 in the fourth set with substitute player Gabriele Nelli contributing as many as 8 successful spikes. In a closely contested fifth set the gap never went wider than one point through 11-11. This is when Italy made their final run to the semi-finals. With Luca Borgogno serving, they scored 4 points in a row to end the match at 15-11 and unleash the celebration.

The block was the strongest weapon for the winning team in the match as it contributed as many as 16 points to the victory. Italy’s Gabriele Nelli, who entered the court during the second set as a substitute player, piled up 23 points on his account to top the scorers’ chart of the match. Gonzalo Quiroga scored 14 points for Argentina.

Italy’s 3-2 victory over Argentina in a quarter-final match at the FIVB Volleyball Men's U21 World Championship in Ankara as difficult but well-deserved, according to the post-game statements of the two teams’ coaches and captains.

Press Conference:

Fabian Muraco, coach of Argentina: “First, we congratulate Italy. They played well today. We tried our best on the court, but we could not deal with their blocks. Italy has good blocking, reception and serving. Now we will fight for the fifth place in the championship, but to be even among the eight best teams is a very good thing for us.”

Fernando Arpajou, captain of Argentina: “Today we did not perform very well. We are sad that we lost this game. Italy is a good team and I believe they have the chances to be successful in the next matches.”

Marco Bonitta, coach of Italy: “It was a strange game with three different phases in it. In the first and second sets we had advantage, but then Argentina were more successful and in the last sets we managed to be better again. I believe we deserved this win in the game against such strong opponents and we are ready to fight strong in next games.”

Edoardo Picco, captain of Italy: “Argentina are a strong team with great tactics and great strategy. We had difficulties playing this game, especially in the middle. But in the fourth and fifth sets we got our game back and were more successful.”

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