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Zamalek beat defending champions to open African Club Championship campaign

 
Sousse, Tunisia, March 7, 2014 - Zamalek of Egypt began their 2015 Men's African Club Championship campaign with a victory against defending champions Esperance of Tunisia. The winner of the 2015 African Men’s Club Championship, which takes place from March 5-17, will also earn a berth at the FIVB Volleyball Men's Club World Championship, which will take place in Brazil.
 
The opening day of the competition, which is taking place at the Olympic and Msaken Halls in Sousse, Tunisia, saw most of the favourites begin with victories, including hosts Etoile Sportive du Sahel (TUN), record holders Ahly (EGY), FAP (CMR), Borj Bouaririj and Setif (both from ALG).
 
Among emerging teams, the two Moroccan representatives FAR and Tangier claimed victorious after prolonged absences from the competition.
 
The competition's opening day featured 12 matches in the 4 preliminary pools. Day 2 takes place on Sunday.
 
The opening day was attended by CAVB President Dr Amr Elwani, Control Committee president Louis Timba, SOC Delegates Okba Gougam and Morakinyo Ebenezer, Referee Delegates Hassan Ahmed and Majeed Djirad and CAVB executive Director Howyda Mondy.
 
Pool A
ESS (TUN) v Autoridede (MOZ) 3-0 (25-14, 25-10, 25-17)
Ittihad Tangier (MAR) v Daim Hamad (SUD) 3-0 (25-14, 25-16, 25-16)
Douanes (BUR) v Atletico (CPV) 3-2 (22-25, 25-22, 25-12, 24-26, 15-7)
 
In Pool A, it was an easy journey for the hosts ESS (TUN), who beat the less experienced Autoridade (MOZ) 3-0 (25-14, 25-10, 25-17) in 52 minutes. Outside hitter Mohamed Ben Ali was the top match scorer with 15 points as the organisers dominated all the skills. Ittihad Tangier (MAR) overwhelm Daim Hamad (SUD) 3-0 (25-14, 25-16, 25-16) in a match showing strong performances for the winners in their first appearance at the continental level. Douanes (BUR) needed over two hours to overpower Atletico (CPV) 3-2 (22-25, 25-22, 25-12, 24-26, 15-7) in one of the day's most thrilling match.
 
Pool B
FAR (MAR) v Swehly (LIB) 3-2 (19-25, 25-14, 25-15, 18-25, 15-13)
Zamalek (EGY) v Esperance (TUN) 3-1 (25-21, 15-21, 25-22, 25-20)
FAP (CMR) v Nahda (SUD) 3-0 (25-10, 25-14, 25-20)
 
Zamalek (EGY) started their campaign in the best possible fashion as they battled the defending champions Esperance (TUN) 3-1 (25-21, 15-21, 25-22, 25-20) in an exciting show lasting 98 minutes. Opposite spiker Reda Heikal topped the match scorers with 17 points. His three aces also contributed to an important victory.
 
FAR (MAR) performed well for Moroccan Volleyball as they topped Swehly (LIB) 3-2 (19-25, 25-14, 25-15, 18-25, 15-13) in a grueling five setter as Cameroon's FAP beat Nahda (SUD) 3-0 (25-10, 25-14, 25-20) in a one side encounter.
 
Pool C
Ahly (EGY) v GSU (KEN) 3-0 (25-14, 25-14, 25-17)
Bourj Bouaririj (ALG) v APR (RWA) 3-0 (25-10, 25-13, 25-14)
Espoir (COD) v Nemo Star (UGA) 3-1 (25-18,19-25, 25-19, 25-23)
 
Egypt's Ahly, who have ten titles to their name, overcame the struggling GSU (KEN) 3-0 (25-14, 25-14, 25-17) as their coach Ibrahim Fakhedeen used most of the substitutes.
 
Bourj Bouaririj (ALG) defeated APR (RWA) 3-0 (25-10, 25-13, 25-14) making a positive. Espoir (COD) pulled off a 3-1 (25-18,19-25, 25-19, 25-23) victory over Nemo Star (UGA).
 
Pool D
Setif (ALG) v Support Unit (ZIM) 3-0 (25-14, 25-15, 25-12)
Somoha (EGY) v Ahly Beni Ghazi (LIB) 3-1 (25-22, 20-25, 29-27, 25-23)
Prisons (KEN) v Kampala (UGA) 3-0 (29-27, 25-13, 25-15)
 
Algeria's Setif beat Support Unit (ZIM) 3-0 (25-14, 25-15, 25-12) as they aim to improve their fifth place finish in 2014. Somoha (EGY) beat Ahly Beni Ghazi (LIB) 3-1 (25-22, 20-25, 29-27, 25-23).  Prisons (KEN) beat Kampala (UGA) 3-0 (29-27, 25-13, 25-15) in an encounter where both teams were closely matched in the first set, before the Kenyans took the upper hand.

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