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Argentine celebration at the last match v Tunisia

Uberlandia, Brazil, October 13, 2013 - Argentina won the 7th-8th place play-off at the Men's U23 World Championship with a 3-0 (21-19, 21-15, 21-15) victory against Tunisia on the last day of competition at the Arena Presidente Tancredo Neves.

The two teams also met in their first match of the tournament on the opening day, when Argentina lost a 2-0 lead before recovering to win the tie-break 16-14 for a 3-2 win on that occasion.

Again Argentina took the first set, but it was a close exchange of points throughout with neither team able to produce a significant advantage. Wing spiker Agustin Ramonda produced the scores in the closing points to give Argentina the set 21-19.

Argentina's defensive game got them into an early second-set lead, with blocking points from captain Juan Ignacio Finoli (2) and Ezequiel Palacios helping them to a 10-4 lead. From there Tunisia errors and attacking points from tournament top scorer Pablo Kukartsev and Ramonda saw Argentina close out the set 21-15.

There was no repeat of the opening match as Argentina completed victory, winning the third set 21-15. Tunisia got their blocking game working early in the set through Mohamed Ali Ben Othmen Miladi, but as Palacios and Ramonda became bigger contributors of points, Argentina moved away to take the set.

Palacios (15) was Argentina's top scorer, while Ramonda (10) also scored well for the winners, while middle blocker Omar Agrebi led Tunisia's points with nine.

Press Conference:

Ezequiel Palacios, Argentina player: "We have a bit of a weird feeling. We came here with a goal and we bumped into something different. When we played bad, we were very vulnerable and that reflected on the court. Luckily, we could wrap this up with a good game of the entire team and it's the best way to go home."

Alejandro Grossi, Argentina coach: "It's hard to make an analysis in the heat of the moment, when things are still recent. We completely fulfilled our objective of developing some players for the senior team. In terms of results, we planned to play against Bulgaria with the semi-final spot on stake, and there we were beaten. Failing in that goal made us play very bad against Venezuela. We were a team without soul, without spirit, we didn't even play. That's why I'm glad to finish with a win. It's what this team deserve."

Omar Agrebi, Tunisia player: "We played a bad game today. It was so hard for us to finish the plays. In another competition, we pretend to do it better. The level of this competition was very good, but we know our team is strong enough and I hope we'll play better in the future."

Mohamed Mounir Gara, Tunisia coach: "Before coming here, we had some problems with some players that are very important for this team. Besides, we lost our confidence a little when we lost yesterday against Iran. Today, we didn't play with enough concentration and Argentina showed some great technical skills. In the end, this is volleyball, sometimes we win and sometimes we lose."

Statistics: P2 | Photos: FeVA - FIVB