Poland has secured the first big surprise in this World Championship: the newcomers beat the seasoned Italian squad with 3:1, and thus stay in the match for the title. At a minimum, Poland will finished sixth, while Italy will play against Serbia for the seventh place.
The Polish team came excellently out of the starting blocks, establishing a 8:4 lead. The Squadra Azzurra keeps calm and bounces back. Polish allround player Agata Józefovic shows some spectacular saves, but the first set goes to Italy.
The Polish squad is not deterred. The newcomer demonstrates how well they have prepared for their first international tournament. After being behind with 4:6, the Polish team bounces back scoring four points in a row. Eventually, Poland equalizes by winning the second set.
Poland is now on a roll. While the Italian team is able to bounce back after being behind 4:8 in set three, the Polish team gets back on track and scores its second set point. The sensation is now in reach. The fourth set is a tight affair. Poland has its first two match points at 10:8, but Italy stays calm defending altogether five match points. Eventually it is Klaudia Nagler-Skroban who secures the victory for the Polish team.
Mario Schmidt, Coach (POL): Honestly, I am speechless at the moment. We would have been happy to play for the seventh place. It’s incredible, unbelievable what happened here. This team has only been playing fistball for four month, they are volleyball players. It’s simply fantastic.
Joachim Pertinger (ITA): Unfortunately, we made many unforeseen mistakes in this match. We had to change the line up because our center-field player [Gloria Biasion] got injured. This is no excuse, they fought hard. The Polish team played a great game, I have to congratulate them. It’s hard to have lost such a game due to unforced errors.