Many high points could be found in Sada Cruzeiro, but a very intense defensive work was the best feature of all, fivb.com reported.
Yoandy Leal and Wallace De Souza were in charge of turning those defensive moves into points, leading the way with 16 and 11 tallies, while Isac Santos added four blocks among a total of 10 points. On Paykan, no players reached double numbers.
Spurred by the always noisy Betim crowd, Sada Cruzeiro stepped forward on the opening episode of the game, establishing a 19-14 after a killing block from Isac. The distance remained until the 25th point, with a very strong version of the host team — one strong enough to keep the momentum on the second set, when Paykan tried to emerge. Another set of Isac's blocks and a solid teamwork made the fans celebrate one more time.
Although Paykan manager Peyman Akbari tried several substitutions, the tide of the game didn’t change at all. Sada Cruzeiro held to their winning spirit and, after a point scored by Eder with his head, it was clear that it was en-route to the win. The hall exploded after the final point, a long serve by Paykan that boosted Cruzeiro to another world final.
In a post-match press conference Akbari said, "They played very good today and showed their strength. We couldn’t play as we used to and I think our mind was the reason. If you go for the win, you must give our full potential for that. Like they did. Besides that, our match against the Argentina team finished very late tonight, so we could have used a little more rest. We were not completely ready for the match, but in the end they were better than us."
Marcelo Méndez, Sada Cruzeiro manager said, "I always say that when a team defends well, they are showing their desire to win. Today, we defended a lot. We also worked very well on service and blocking-defense. We could neutralize a very good team, we were consistent enough to do it. It was a game to highlight and we hope to do the same tomorrow."