Greece is still looking for their first victory in EuroVolley 2021, however it might be even more difficult to earn in this encounter as Poland is not only the reigning world champion, but also the only unbeaten team in Pool A. In the opening match of this pool, Greece lost to Ukraine in five-setter and then was unable to stop Belgium, being defeated in straight sets. While, the co-hosts of the event first beat Portugal, and on Saturday emerged victorious from a thrilling five-setter against the defending EuroVolley champion - Serbia with great support of the White-and-Red fans. We might expect some rotations in Vital Heynen's starting six, after the promising performance of Kamil Semeniuk in the previous game.
First RefereeVladimir OLEYNIKRUSSecond RefereeBogdan Laurentiu STOICAROU
TAURON Arena Krakow has become a cultural, sports and business showcase of Krakow. It is the largest in Poland and one of the world’s most modern sport and entertainment venues. The venue consists of the Main Arena and the Small Hall. The possibility of any configuration of the audience, convenient facilities for athletes and performers, Europe’s largest LED screen installed on the façade, extensive multimedia and stage systems, as well as very good acoustic conditions of the facility, are the features that will meet the requirements for events of any scale and different nature. Capacity: 14978
How To Attend
Stanisława Lema 7, KRAKÓW, 31-571 Capacity: 14978
TAURON Arena Kraków is located 4 km from the Main Market Square in Kraków, at Lema Street, between Al. Pokoju, Mogilska Street and al. Jana Pawła II, in XIV Czyżyny District. There are road signs all over the city showing the directions to TAURON Arena Kraków. The venue is well connected with the rest of the city. There are bus and tram stops in the nearby, taxi rank and the car park with over 1300 spaces. One can get to TAURON Arena Kraków by bike – the cycle routes connect the rest of the city. There are bicycle racks for over 200 bikes in front of the building. Get directions
Born in Lemesos, Cyprus, Athanasios Protopsaltis quickly fell in love with volleyball and at the age of 18 moved to Athens. He spend 4 years in the Greek league and then he played in France (Narbonne), Germany (Friedrichshafen) and Poland (Czarni Radom). In 2020-2021 he returned to Greece and played for Foinikas Syrou ONEX but the next year he will play for Panathinaikos Athens.
AddressOAKA, Athens Olympic Aquatics Center - Spyros Louis Avenue MAROUSSI
- All Time
- Birth Date: 11/19/1986
- Birth Place: Kalamata
- Height: 201 cm
- Weight: 92 kg
- Birth Date: 4/2/1994
- Height: 183 cm
- Weight: 72 kg
- Birth Date: 8/28/1999
- Height: 205 cm
- Weight: 82 kg
- Birth Date: 3/18/1989
- Height: 202 cm
- Weight: 80 kg
- Birth Date: 5/22/1980
- Height: 186 cm
- Weight: 80 kg
- Birth Date: 1/21/1993
- Birth Place: GREECE (Athens)
- Height: 193 cm
- Weight: 79 kg
- Birth Date: 5/5/1993
- Birth Place: GREECE
- Height: 203 cm
- Weight: 84 kg
- Birth Date: 6/1/1995
- Height: 188 cm
- Weight: 86 kg
- Birth Date: 3/30/1996
- Height: 201 cm
- Weight: 83 kg
- Birth Date: 1/23/2001
- Height: 188 cm
- Weight: 76 kg
- Birth Date: 2/16/2000
- Height: 190 cm
- Weight: 78 kg
- Birth Date: 5/17/2001
- Height: 199 cm
- Weight: 71 kg
- Birth Date: 2/14/1997
- Height: 201 cm
- Weight: 88 kg
- Birth Date: 9/12/1993
- Birth Place: Lemessos
- Height: 185 cm
- Weight: 73 kg
ACE in the drivers seat of the Poland team bus
Good fun in the Greek locker room before the match
Libero Paweł ZATORSKI (17) in warm-up
Poland come together
Polish fans on the tribune cheering on their team
Polish celebration as they near the end of the match
Menelaos KOKKINAKIS (9) digs a difficult ball to keep Greece in the match
Poland together after their win against Greece
Photos featured on the CEV Photo Galleries are downloadable copyright free for media purposes only and only if CEV is credited as the source material. They are protected by copyright for all other commercial purposes. Those wishing to use CEV Photo Gallery photos for other commercial purposes should contact email@example.com
GREECE v POLAND
Poland began the match in other-than-usual starting lineup, without Leon, Kubiak, Drzyzga and Kurek. Greece was off to a slightly better start and led 5-2, before two serving aces by Kaczmarek evened out the score. Poland pressed on with powerful and accurate serving, while the Greeks could not find much success in attack. The home team scored series of points and arrived at the end of the set with a 10 point advantage.
After sides were switched, it became apparent that team Hellas decided to take an “all or nothing” approach at the service line. Errors were frequent but those serves that arrived on the opponents’ side did cause trouble to Poland’s receivers. An ace by Zoupani put his team on a 7-5 lead and their now efficient attack kept them a step ahead of the Poles. At 19-all Drzyzga and Kurek reinforced the Polish squad. This seemed to have thrown Greece off the track as they gave away the last points of the set for free (25:22).
Poland made its own share of errors after the break, including those in spiking and serving, while Greece marched on to a 10-5 lead. Vital Heynen let Leon onto the court and followed it up with a double substitution not long after. Good blocking by Kurek and Nowakowski coupled with Leon’s serving closed the gap to an extent (12-15). However, even with a 100% of Poland’s starting six substituted by the end of the set, Greece managed to do their job well enough to stay in the match with five points on the hosts.
Poland quickly gained a 5-point advantage in set No. 4, but began losing momentum at 12-7 mark, letting the Greek players bounce back and catch up at 16-all. After a block on Nowakowski Greece lead 20-19 and a tie-breaker was looming. The finale of the set was quite nervous, with prolonged video challenges adding to the uncertainty of the final result but Wilfredo ended the match on a high note, with a spike from the left wing (26-24).
"I'm very happy that we won this game. In this edition of EuroVolley many favourites have already dropped points and sets, or even suffered defeats like Slovenia or Russia. So the most important thing is the result on the scoreboard that gives us three points. Tomorrow is another game and we definitely will learn the lesson from today and I hope that we will get better and better."
outside hitter of Poland
"I feel very proud of my teammates and myself, because we almost managed to cause a big surprise against one very big team. Every player of Poland is a legend, so this is a very big thing for the Greek team. I think it was a mistake with this challenge in the end of the last set, but this is volleyball, this is life, we have to forget about it and be proud of our performance."
setter of Greece
The match in numbers
The combined total number of points scored by both teams throughout the entire match.
The total length of the match, from the first serve through until the last point has ended.
Total number of people in attendance at the venue – taken at the end of the second set.
The combined total number of successful spikes achieved by both teams throughout the entire match.
An average of the two team service reception percentages from the complete match.
The number of successful point winning blocks of GREECE compared to POLAND.
GREECE number of service aces compared to POLAND
Errors leading to points of GREECE, next to those from POLAND