Betim, Brazil, October 31, 2015 - With the bonus of a rematch after their loss at pool stage, hosts Sada Cruzeiro clinched the gold medal at FIVB Men’s Club World Championship with a well-earned 3-1 (25-20, 21-25, 27-25, 25-21) over European champions Zenit Kazan from Russia.
Cuba’s Yoandy Leal had a rising curve during the game as he led the Brazilian offensive force with 22 kills, well supported by teammates Wallace De Souza and Filipe Ferraz. On the Russian team, Wilfredo León’s 19-point performance was not enough this time as they failed to repeat the result of days ago, haunted by unforced errors.
At a very hot afternoon in Betim, the fans raised the temperature even more at Ginasio Divino Braga and Zenit Kazan gave away the first set under such demanding conditions, with a bunch of mistakes at the end. Nonetheless, the Russian side answered with a good entrance of young star Victor Poletaev, unleashing several aces to steer the match into a 1-1 tie.
Both teams sensed the importance of the third set, but only one could grab it and it was Sada Cruzeiro, bouncing back from a 13-16 with Wallace and then using Leal and Filipe as key players at an extremely close ending. That 27-25 sent the local confidence through the roof, as Leal did even better and helped Cruzeiro to win the match and the championship.