The European presence of Olympiacos in CEV Challenge Cup – Men ended today. Having qualified against Inegol, Tours, Lokomotiv Baku, Menen and Surgut, the ‘’Reds’’ were defeated by Italian Ravenna in the final. In its fifth final, Olympiacos was unable to overturn the 3-1 of the first match and also lost 3-1 in the second one. The team of the coach Munoz showed for another time that it is very strong before 11,000 fans and the Presidents Vangelis Marinakis and Michalis Kountouris and it deserves the second place in the European competition.
Olympiacos was determined to overturn the 3-1 of the first game and win the trophy. The game was balanced in the beginning with the two teams being close. Although Ravenna went ahead (8-6) in the first technical timeout, Olympiacos reacted and tied to 15-15 and preceded 16-15. The Italians took a three point margin (22-19) but Olympiacos replied with the points of Rauwerdink and Drzyzga (21-22). Bohme did 22-22 and Drzyzga gave the lead to Olympiacos (23-22). Ravenna was better in details and won 28-26.
Olympiacos was excellent in the beginning of the second set and went ahead with 8-4 in the first technical timeout. The ‘’Reds’’ were concentrated and efficient, kept the lead and increased the margin to five points (13-8). In the second technical timeout, the Greek team was ahead with 16-11. Although Ravenna reduced to 19-18, Olympiacos reacted and scored crucial points. The coach Munoz did some substitutions with Zoupani, Stivachtis and Christofidelis entering to the game. The Italians preceded 21-23 but Rauwerdink and Aleksiev tied the set (23-23). A mistake of Ravenna gave the lead to Olympiacos and finally, Rauwerdink scored to equalize the game (1-1).
Olympiacos also continued strongly in the third set and led with 6-1 and 8-5 in the first technical timeout. The ‘’Reds’’ went ahead 18-16 in the second one but Ravenna tied the set (18-18). Rauwerdink equalized 19-19 but the Italians scored two consecutive points for 19-21. Oivanen reduced to 20-21 but Ravenna did a 4-0 run to take the third set which secured the winning of the trophy. The Olympiacos fans created an amazing atmosphere without stopping to sing for their team.
The fourth set was typical with the two teams using substitute players. Everyone was impressed by the excellent atmosphere that fans created and continued to sing in spite of the defeat. As far as the score of the fourth set is concerned, Ravenna took the lead, kept it until the end and won 25-18 for 3-1.
The sets: 1-3: 26-28, 25-23, 20-25, 18-25
1st set: 6-8, 16-15, 19-21, 26-28
2nd set: 8-4, 16-11, 21-20, 25-23
3rd set: 8-5, 16-12, 19-21, 20-25
4th set: 6-8, 10-16, 15-21, 18-25
Olympiacos (Munoz Benitez Fernando): Oivanen 11 (11/28 attacks), Petreas 5 (4/6 attacks, 1 block), Bohme 10 (4/6 attacks, 4 blocks, 2 aces), Drzyzga 2 (2 aces), Aleksiev 10 (9/24 attacks, 1 block, 39% pos – 28% exc.), Rauwerdink 15 (12/33 attacks, 1 block, 2 aces, 46% pos-31% exc.), Stefanou (L, 50% pos-31% exc.), Christofidelis, Roumeliotakis 1 (1/1 attacks, 33% pos-33% exc.), Daridis, Zoupani 1 (1/3 attacks), Stivachtis, Andreadis, Tselios
Ravenna (Fabio Soli): Orduna 2 (2/2 attacks), Poglajen 6 (5/11 attacks, 1 block, 63%pos.-44%exc.), Georgiev 9 (4/8 attacks, 5 blocks), Diamantini 6 (3/7 attacks, 3 blocks), Marechal 12 (10/21 attacks, 1 block, 1 ace, 50% pos.-25% exc.), Buchegger 21 (19/34 attacks, 1 block, 1 ace, 100%pos), Goi (L,44%pos-33%exc.) / Vitelli 1 (1 block), Raffaelli 11 (7/11 attacks, 3 blocks, 1 ace, 55%pos-18%exc.), Pistolesi, Gutierrez 4 (4/4 attacks), Marchinni.
Munoz-Benitez: ‘’I would like to thank our fans for the great atmosphere and their support until the end of the game. It is a value that you cannot meet it anywhere else and that’s very important for the club. I am very proud of my team, the players, the staff because they did a great effort during our European participation. Congratulations to Ravenna for the trophy.’’
Christofidelis: Congratulations to Ravenna for the trophy. I would also like to congratulate the women’s volleyball team for the winning of the Challenge Cup in Turkey. We expect that the fans will be close to us in the next matches. We also hope that the Presidents Vangelis Marinakis and Michalis Kountouris will continue to support the club and we promise that we will try to achieve our main goals which are the winning of the Greek Championship and the Greek Cup.’’