Posts by ignorans

    what do you guys think about the chances of setter Popova making the wide roster? Obviously Romanova and Startseva are the main setters but the back-up setter is very wide because the rest are more or less on the same level. Her ball and location control is still subpar but she is aggressive and young. She plays either really good or bad and no in betweens. Matveeva is obviously even younger and have been the main setter of her team but i just dont find her game aggressive or creative enough to make difference.

    I would like to see Startseva/Popova... I think Popova improved a lots since last summer and is the most exciting young setter in Russia. Matveeva is doing a decent job but is not yet good enough for the NT. I don't really like Romanova (hardly ever had a good game with the NT) but expect her to be the second setter at the olympics. Other decent setters are Filishtinskaya (she looked better than before her break), Vetrova (a bit too inconsistent) and Efimova (played really well the previous season; haven't seen her this season since she played with Severyanka).

    Tomorrow is the playoff decision:

    Enisei was very disappointing in the first match (0:3) and it seems very unlikey that they will be able to win in Kaliningrad.

    Lipetsk's reception was non-existing in the first match (0:3). They can't play worse...

    I feel like Minchanka lost their chancen to make the final six in the first game (2:3) in the first game. They had matchpoints in the third set and were leading 24:20 in the fourth...

    Krasnodar is still below form (1:3 in Saratov). The reception was shaky (especially Sperskayte). They have the means to make it to the final six but they need to really step it up...

    Last game of qualification round is on Saturday: Moscow in Kazan. Moscow needs three points to win the qualification. The game does not really matter since both teams are qualified for the final six...

    The first playoff matches will also be played on Saturday. The winners will be part of the final six in Moscow.

    Enisey - Loko: Loko is doing considerably better with Lippmann and ended up in third place. But Enisey was doing pretty good in recent weeks. They have good setters and MB's and Leyva seems to have solved the problem with the second OH (M. Frolova still solid). They met nine days ago in Kaliningrad (3:2 for Loko) when Enisey came back 2 sets down. Loko is the favourite but Enisey might get their chances.

    Proton - Krasnodar: Both teams are not doing so well right now. Krasnodar had a good start last year and ended up third in the Russian Cup but played rather poorly in recent weeks (0:3 against Leningradka nine days ago, 1:3 against Sparta). They met three days ago when Dinamo won 3:0 (26:24, 29:27, 25:17). Krasnodar should make it to the finals but it will probably be closer than in the last game (Krasnodar won the first game 3:2).

    Minchanka - Leningradka: This is the best season for Minchanka since they joined the Superleague. They were unlucky had two quarantine breaks this season. The had back to back games in December (Leningradka won first 3:1, lost second 2:3). Leningradka is now without Kryuchkova and Nyakina is not as good as her. Should be close with Leningradka slightly the favourite.

    Lipetsk - Uralochka: Lipetsk is the surprise team of the season (or at least for me). The newcomer placed seventh after the qualification. Both matches against each other where in December (Lipetsk won first 3:1, lost second 2:3). Back then Uralochka was still looking for the right formation without Parubets. They are stronger now but still not convincing (lost 0:3 last Saturday against Enisey). Both teams have some problems in attack which would suggest long and close matches.

    Odd move from Sazonova. She needs to be playing if she wants to be part of the NT.

    Very unfortunate for Lipetsk. They had a good season and Sazonova had a lot to do with that. I guess Gorbunova will play OH. Good thing Korzhova was doing well lately. With nine wins so far they should be able to make the playoffs since they have to play Enisey, Sparta and Tulitsa in the last six games.

    Enisey used four different opposite players agains Dinamo Metar (the won after losing the first two sets). This season five players were on that position: Pisarevskaya, Leyva Tagle, Simonova (OH), Brovkina (MB) and Samoilenko (MB). They have too many good middleblockers and lacking quality on OPP...

    I think it is too early to say who will be in the team in spring/summer. Some players are fix as long they are healthy but especially the OH postitions will depend on who is playing in the next months in their clubs and how they are doing.

    Fix members of the NT:





    Romanova is probably still the favorite for the second setter position but I hope some other players will get the chance. I think Vetrova is having a pretty good comeback. Filishinskaya is not doing as good but she is in a very weak club. I liked Efimova last season but she is not in the superleague anymore.

    I think Voronkova is the only OH apart from Parubets who has a safe place in the NT. She is still better than the other options... I like Sazonova but her reception is not consistent. But she is only 22 and it is her first season. She receives most balls and gets also most balls in attack (similar to Parubets). Some players to consider If you just go by the stats: Chaplina, Shevchuk, Zvereva (only if she plays more), Shcherban, O. Frolova (needs to play more, was really good last season), Simonenko, Fedorovtseva, Pipurynova, Krotkova (needs to play more). I like Kotikova but she needs to play more. Kadochkina needs to improve her reception. No idea how Lazareva and Kosheleva are doing but they are obviously options.

    Looking at the league stats, Fedorovtseva has 52% positive reception (Malova has 54%), not very good but passable and definitely better than Voronkova. The other OH alternatives Scherban etc are too unstable and won't contribute too much in attack anyway so I think Fedorovtseva is the closest player as a replacement for Parubets. I know she is still too young (17 y.o. next year), but in the games she has played so far, it seems she is able to cope with the pressure. Arina and Malova can do a 2-person receiving system like Serbia..

    The stats I see favour Voronkova (57 %)…ic&act=main_stat&gender=f…gComplete.aspx?ID=21&rt=7

    Russian Cup this weekend in Moscow:

    The four best teams of the season made it to the final four (technically Leningradka fifth behind Kaliningrad but Kaliningrad was not that strong in recent weeks...).

    The semis are Krasnodar vs Kazan and Leningradka vs Moscow. A few thoughts on the teams (if no players are absent):

    Kazan: Won the Cup last season and favorite this year. Won 3:0 against Krasnodar and Leningradka, lost 2:3 against Moscow (without Startseva and Fedorovtseva). Their poor performance in CL showed that they are not at their best yet but still the team to beat.

    Moscow: Leader of the league. Lost the final last year. Had to play five sets against the other three teams in the league (lost agains Krasnodar after being 2:0 ahead, won against Leningradka thanks to Klimets/Babeshina). They are better than in the last few years and have a good chance to win the Cup.

    Krasnodar: Strongest team in years with the best substitutes in the league (for every position except the OPP they have a sub who is almost as good as the starter). Kazan is probably too strong for them unless they serve really well.

    Leningradka: Very experienced players (hardly any player is younger than 28). Setter Neponmyashchikh is doing much better than in previous seasons. I don't think that they can manage another suprise like in the qualification (clear win in Kaliningrad) unless Moscow is having a really bad day.

    A bit late but we had one of the biggest surprises in recent years last round. Lipetsk won 3:0 (25:12, 25:22, 25:20) agains Lokomotiv! Loko was missing Dijkema, Kurilo and Galkina (played a few points, Gorbacheva is not worse though) but they should still have done better. Lipetsk has almost the same team they had in the lower league last season. Libero is 19, OH's 22 and Gorbunova (OPP) 17! Loko players have more Superleague experience and several have even played in the NT. Setter Ryseva is the one with the least experience but she is doing a pretty decent job. Sazanova is one of the highlights this season (didn't know her before). She made 24 points with 59 % in attack and great reception. If she gets more consistent in reception she might even be an option for the NT.

    Lipetsk will play Uralochka (back from quarantine and first match without Parubets) this weekend and should have a chance.

    Kazan and Moscow are having a competion for quickest win or at least it looks like that... Moscow had four quick matches in a row (2x Zarechie, Minchanka,

    Enisey), Kazan was even faster with 62 minutes against Chelyabinsk and 60 minutes agains Lipetsk.

    Kaliningrad is playing in Lipetsk. They missed several players because of COVID-19 (Dijkema, Galkina and Zaytseva last match). Vorobyeva seems to be a good OPP until Lippman joins the team.

    Moscow, Leningradka, Kazan and Krasnodar will play the final four cup tournament. Uralochka and Odintsovo were missing several players (first setter, only juniors as subs etc.). Leningradka surprised Kaliningrad (reception was pretty bad). Leningradka had the oldest team (most players are 29 and older) in the group. Lipetsk had five players 22 or younger and Kaliningrad has most players between 22 and 28.

    Minchanka is in their second quarantine. Today and on Saturday are the next league matches. The promoted teams Sparta and Lipetsk play each other. Both teams have two wins so far. Proton - Krasnodar is the most interesting match.

    This is not the NT thread!

    Some remarks to Krasnodar-Moscow: First defeat for Moscow this season. First match in ages without challenge system (I think they introduced it more than two years ago in Russia), I like that there are less interuptions without it. Krasnodar was missing two OH (Pipurynova, Sukhoverkhova) so that Zvereva was a starter for the second time. I think she played well. Bulatovic hardly ever makes changes in the line up. This time Babeshina and Krotkova spent a few minutes on court...

    Cup matches this weekend. Four "groups" with the winner going to the final four in Moscow. First named team is host:

    Group 1: Kazan, Zarechie, Dinamo Metar (Kazan-Chelyabinsk will also count as a league game since they would meet in the next round)

    Group 2: Kaliningrad, Leningrad, Lipetsk (Lipetsk was missing both OPP last game)

    Group 3: Uralochka, Krasnodar (Tulitsa would have been the third team but they are until next wednesday)

    Group 4: Moscow, Proton, Uralochka 2

    Host teams are favourtes. Krasnodar might have a small chance if Pipurynova and Sukhoverkhova can play. Uralochka won ten days ago 3:1 but it was 29:27 in the fourth set.

    Startseva is training with the team but won't play

    (Most of) round seven this weekend...

    Loko is back and will play Krasnodar. They only have one win so far (out of three games), Krasnodar had their first defeat (out of six games) against Kazan

    last week.

    The other interesting match is Uralochka - Proton . Uralochka has only two wins so far and was dominated by Moscow last week. I think they are still missing some injured players like setter Sorokina. Proton lost 2:3 to Kazan but won the other four games.