Posts by Keyser

    I don't understand, what was karch arguing about?

    "The hitter touched it last?" Or "the hitter touched the net?"

    It doesn't seem there is a net touch.

    "The hitter touched it last" Meaning that the ball stayed in contact with Zhu longer than with the block.
    These situations happen sometimes and it's hard to make a call. IMO Karch was right.

    Seems like Czech Republic just snatched the last slot for the European OQT from Finland by finishing one place ahead of them :D So it is most definitely SRB, FRA, BUL, BEL, SLO, NED, GER and CZE taking part at that tournament in Berlin.
    I's say 70% chance France takes it and 30% for Serbia. Can't see anyone else winning it.

    It's still annoying that Venezuela (?) will get to play at the Olympics over France/Serbia.

    You nailed it, all of it. The case of Maja Ognjenovic is an incredible tale of a late bloomer (but a "late bloomer" who was also very good early on...if that makes sense), in more than one sense. If you would have made a questionnaire in volleyball circles in 2012, asking for people's thoughts on Maja, at most they would have said that she was a major talent who never achieved anything close to her potential, and probably would not be even regarded as top 50 setters of all time. Also, she was not even the most popular or well-known player in Serbia. She was 28 at the time.

    Now, seven years later, she is widely regarded as one of the greatest setters of 21st century, a living legend of the game, and she is one of only handful of female athletes that is widely beloved and respected in her home country, a country which is very misogynistic in general, and for the most part only cares and "respects" female sports/athletes as far as they are able to drool over them. Plus, what Joana said about her private life, and how she has grown as a person in her late 20s/early 30s.

    Now, I'm not saying that 2012 in specific is a big demarcation point, or that she didn't have at least some of her biggest successes before that (as well as some duds after), but it really puts things into perspective, when you view it from that angle.

    Sorry, but this highlighted is complete bollocks. Successes of female athletes have always been celebrated and acknowledged in Serbia as much as they would have been in any other country. The fact is that women's sports are generally less popular than men's (for various reasons).

    And yes, better looking athletes get more media coverage, but that is not an exclusively serbian thing. E.g. how many people know who Maria Sharapova and how many know who Justine Henin is? Hell, it happens in men's sports as well.

    I mean, sure, Serbia has a lot of issues, but equality in sports isn't one of them.

    I have a feeling that Russia is waiting for Terzić to be done with Serbia after the Olympics. And I have to admit that Terzić and Russia would probably be a good fit.

    The Czech Republic have to thank Jan Hadrava for sending them into the next round. Montenegro were otherwise close to upseting yet another team. With their two wins, just like North Macedonia, Montenegro completed a memorable first ECH campaign. I didn't like the Czech MBs at all. From a potent presence in the midlde once with the likes of Lebl, Rak, Stanek, Vesely, even Jiri Kral, to Sobotka and Zajicek now, this is where the Czechs suffer the most. And still, today they underperformed, despite the much better display last night against the Dutch (fatigue had surely played a role here), and the only reliable option to convert points for them did a fantastic job.

    In Antwerp, Germany's B with Karlitzek, Schott, Zimmermann, Bohme, Hirsch, is surprisingly good enough to win only a set against Spain... Spain took advantage of the situation and advances to the next round at the expense of a slightly better, to me, Slovakian team.

    Hadrava was indeed fantastic today. 39 pts including 10 aces, he was pretty much the only Czech player who had a good match, but what a match for him it was.
    Germany apparently played with zero motivation today against an opponent that needed to win. Can't really blame the Germans too much for this loss, it is hard to play matches like this, especially when they kind of had a disappointing tournament so far. I think they will win over the Dutch in the 1/8 finals tho.

    Too bad for Slovakia, Spain got really lucky with the match schedule there.

    What the hell is going on with Estonia? I haven't been able to watch any of the ECH so far, but this seems like those situations where a team is deliberately losing in order to achieve something out of court, ie change of coach, sending a message to their federation, etc. Not to take the other teams' merits, of course.

    Today's match was irrelevant for them, they were going to finish last anyway. They choked big-time in pretty much every set vs Montenegro and Czech, so I suppose they were mentally down. The loss to Montenegro was probably a big blow for them, they wasted advantage in all 3 sets against a team which is less experienced and objectively weaker than them.

    Ha, this is a dramatic end in Pool A. For the bottom-placed teams, I mean. Romania just beat Portugal 3-1, thus equalizing the won-lost, points, and sets ratio between Romania, Greece, and Portugal! It all comes down to match points ratio where, attention, Greece have conceded a point less than Portugal (they have the same amount of won match points) and will make it to the Last 16 as the 4th-placed team in Pool A. You can't have less drama between those 3 even if you designed it yourself :D Poor Portugal, they just needed 2 sets today or at least 1 or 2 more points to secure an elimination phase spot.

    I've never seen anything like it. Not qualifying by one single point. The portuguese must feel horrible :(

    World Cup is probably the stronger tournament, but ECh just has more prestige for European teams. I think non-europeans don't realize that in Europe ECh is often considered to be as important as WCh, and not just in volleyball but in other sports too.

    In my opinion, OQT and ECh were the main tournaments this season for the Netherlands and Russia as well. However, unlike Serbia, they need those FIVB ranking points, so they can't afford to send their B teams.

    Unfortunately, apart from some extra spice, Bulgaria cannot offer much more. I don't see any other team preventing those two from meeting in the final.

    I know, right? It's hard to argue when people can't even tell one country from another :D

    Macedonia's win makes the situation in Pool C rather interesting. I doubt Russia will let go of the first place (will they play fair against the hosts?), Slovenia's second place and their home crowd advantage in the last 16 is under threat, though. There's a high chance Turkey takes it (they are 2-0 against Belarus as I write). And the runner-up in A might meet Slovenia in Montpellier instead of Turkey/Finland. Also, Macedonia will follow tomorrow's matches closely but they have every chance of earning a historic elimination berth.

    I am 90% sure that that match would still be played in Slovenia, like it was in the women's tournament.

    There is even a small chance that the draw dictates that Slovenia plays France in the 1/8 finals, and apparently two hosts can't meet before the QF (or even SF?), which would lead to some teams switching places in the draw.

    It's a proper mess, I know :D

    Normally I would agree with you, but the Olympic qualifications have always been strange and somehow unpredictable. Germany eliminated Cuba in 2012, almost eliminated Poland in 2016 (match point on 5th set). Spain almost eliminated Serbia (forgot the year but you should know what I'm talking about, like more than 10 years ago), Thailand was robbed several times against teams on paper a magnitude superior to them...

    Can Bulgaria win the entire OQT? Maybe not. Can they beat and eliminate at least one between Serbia or France? Absolutely, yes. If they don't implode like against Brazil, that's it.

    It is true that OQTs are often strange, especially those played mid club season, but France have been so consistent in the last few years, that I can't see them losing to Bulgaria. IMO, the only one with the potential of beating France is Serbia.

    Serbia however can definitely be beaten by Bulgaria (or even the likes of Belgium and Germany).

    As probably the only one here who enjoys the tournament and has watched all participating teams, let me just give you a piece of statistics which I am sure you have completely ignored. North Macedonia's MB Filip Madjunkov had a spectacular, if the stats sheet provided by CEV is accurate (I couldn't watch that specific match), serving performance against Russia. North Macedonia matched Russia's 14 aces and Madjunkov is said to have served 11 aces himself! Out of 13 total attempts and without errors! This must be some kind of a new record for serve efficiency.

    And now I am sure I am the only non-Portuguese and non-Greek watching the battle for the 4th place in Pool A ;)

    Yeah I saw that stat too, but then I thought it can't be right because in the match vs Belarus he was often subbed when it was his time to serve :D

    Oh, I'm also watching GRE-POR, but only cuz I'm betting