Betim, Brazil, October 29, 2015 - Opening Thursday action in Betim, Russia’s Zenit Kazan cruised past Capitanes de Arecibo from Puerto Rico 3-0 (25-19, 25-20, 25-16) and became the fourth and last team to make it to the semifinals. The European champions finished atop of Pool A with the win, while Capitanes were left out of contest.
Puerto Rican Ezequiel Cruz was the only player able to harm the solid Russian machinery, topping all the scorers with 17 points. Zenit Kazan showed lower numbers due to several substitutions, with Maxim Mikhaylov as leader with 10 shots.
The fighting spirit shown by Capitanes crashed against the mighty serves from the Russian team - Anderson, Apalikov and Sivozhelez all scored from the service line to subdue their opponents. The point that sealed the semifinal place for Zenit Kazan had another powerful serve by Kobzar, but it was a fault at the net what closed the first set.
However, Kazan didn’t relax at all, not even with the achieved set and the secured ticket. Coach Alekno kept the starting lineup for the second set and things ran down the same path, with Zenit Kazan in control. Only on the third chapter, the rest of the bench entered the court. And although Cruz did well for Capitanes, it wasn’t enough to reverse the course and avoid the defeat.