FIVB World League: France Looks to Stay Perfect in Pool F1 (PREVIEW)

2017 FIVB WORLD LEAGUE – POOL F1 PREVIEW

  • June 9-11, 2017
  • Palais des Sports, Pau, France
  • Central European Summer Time Zone (UTC+01:00)
  • Live results
  • Week 1 points leaders

Schedule:

DATE LOCAL TIME HOME TEAM AWAY TEAM
9 Jun 17:30 Italy USA
9 Jun 20:30 France Russia
10 Jun 17:30 USA Russia
10 Jun 20:30 France Italy
11 Jun 15:30 Italy Russia
11 Jun 18:30 France USA
  • 17:30 matches on June 9th/10th will begin at 11:30 New York Time
  • 20:30 matches on June 9th/10th will begin at  22:30 Moscow Time Zone
  • 15:30 matches on June 11th will begin at 17:30 Moscow Time Zone
  • 18:30 matches on June 11th will begin at 12:30 New York Time

Group 1 Standings:

MATCHES PTS SETS POINTS
Rank Team W L W L Ratio W L Ratio
1 France*** 3 0 9 9 1 9.000 249 203 1.227
2 Belgium 2 1 7 8 4 2.000 284 259 1.097
3 Brazil 2 1 7 8 5 1.600 288 277 1.040
4 Serbia 2 1 6 6 5 1.200 254 248 1.024
5 Poland 2 1 5 7 6 1.167 293 276 1.062
6 Canada 2 1 4 7 7 1.000 303 307 0.987
7 Russia*** 1 2 4 6 6 1.000 264 254 1.039
8 Italy*** 1 2 3 5 6 0.833 243 255 0.953
9 Bulgaria 1 2 3 5 8 0.625 269 293 0.918
10 Iran 1 2 3 4 7 0.571 248 264 0.939
11 Argentina 1 2 2 3 8 0.375 226 258 0.876
12 United States*** 0 3 1 4 9 0.444 277 304 0.911

Notes: Brazil, host of the Final 6, highlighted in blue. *** denotes teams playing in Group D1.

Preview:

France comes into Pool F1 as the lone undefeated squad remaining in World League. Not only did the French side remain perfect with wins against Bulgaria, Russia and Argentina, but they did so in four sets or less to take the maximum nine points. Stephen Boyer was the top attacker for France, netting 47 points, while Julien Lyneel scored 41 and finished second in Group 1 in aces (7) in the opening week.

The final three participants in Pool F1 all sit below the line needed to make the Final Six. Russia (seventh) sits right on the edge behind a sweep of Argentina and a fourth point from a five-set loss to Bulgaria. The Russians were led by the great blocking of Denis Biriukov (11) and Ilia Vlasov (11), who tied for the Group 1 lead. Maxim Zhigalov also punched the most aces of the opening week with eight of them.

Italy, right behind Russia in eighth, got a 3-0 win over Iran but couldn’t gather up another point in four-set losses to Poland and Brazil. Filippo Lanza led the Italians with 41 points. Luca Vettori wasn’t far behind with 39 in the first weekend of pool play.

The United States will try to get off the schneid this weekend after losing all three matches, with their lone point coming in a five-set loss to Canada that was stuffed in between four-set losses to Serbia and Belgium. Benjamin Patch scored a team-best 17 points in that lone point recorded for the Red, White and Blue.

The French-Russian rematch will take place on Friday. The first meeting was a 3-1 France victory as they were charged up by a combined 52 points from Stephen Boyer (18), Julie Lyneel (17) and Trevon Clevenot (17).

On the same day, the United States will face Italy in a rematch of the 2016 Olympic semifinals. The Italians won that match 3-2 as they would take the silver and the U.S. won the bronze in Rio.

Speaking of that bronze medal, the very next day the United States will take on the Russian side that they won 3-2 against in that 2016 Olympic bronze medal match. Similar to U.S.-Russia, the Italy-France battle on June 10th will also be a rematch of a third place game; France defeated Italy 3-0 in the 2016 FIVB World League third place match.

On the final day, Italy and Russia square off in a match that fares two squads on the bubble of the Final Six. The U.S.-France matchup features two teams on diametrically opposed ends of the standings.

For France, they’ll look to stay perfect and expand on its overall Group 1 first place lead. The other three squads are treading water. They’ll have an opportunity to beat up on other competition in the same circumstance as themselves though as they look to move up in the standings.

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