Iran edge past Italy at FIVB Volleyball World Grand Champions Cup

( Amir Ghafour and Milad Ebadipour’s fiery performance sparked Iran’s 3-2 (25-19, 23-25, 28-26, 29-31, 15-11) win over Italy in the FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Grand Champions Cup at the Nippon Gaishi Hall on Tuesday.

Ebadipour and Ghafour registered 21 and 20 points to lead the Iranian offence, while Filippo Lanza and Oleg Antonov made 23 and 18 points to command the Italian side. Iran benefitted from the 42 turnovers of Italy, wrote.

Iran prevailed once more in their second tie-break encounter with Italy. Four of Iran’s five wins at the World Grand Champions Cup have come in five sets. Iran last beat Italy at world level was at the 2014 FIVB Volleyball Men’s World Championship in Poland, where they claimed a 3-1 win.

Italy gave away many points to Iran on their turnovers, which helped the latter take the opening set win at 25-19. Italy bounced back to win 25-23, but Iran came up with good digs to counter-attack and secure the third set at 28-26. In the fourth set, Giulio Sabbi heroics in crucial moments led to an Italian win at 31-29. Iran’s scoring spurts at the start of the tie-breaker, helped their side pull away and complete the victory.

Team Melli will face the U.S. on Wednesday.

The competition has brought six teams Iran, Japan, the U.S., France, Italy and Brazil together in Nagoya and Osaka, Japan from 12 to 17 September.