Päivitetty: 30. lokak.
The first round of the CEV Challenge Cup was played on last Wednesday. Akaa-Volley started the cup against Odbojkarski klub Merkur Maribor from Slovenia. The club is better known by the shorter name OK Maribor.
A small but loud audience got to witness Akaa-Volley's 1 – 3 (21-25, 25-22, 25-27, 21-25) victory. This is how Akaa-Volley has taken another big step forward in its journey. The team's first victory in an international cup is a fact.
The game was under Akaa-Volley's control quite well, except for the slump in the second set. In that set, the team's attack percentage dropped to just under 40. An interesting fact frm the statistics is that in that set, the reception was the best of the match.
Akaa-Volley's serves were not successful in OK Maribor's home arena caller Tudor Hall hall. Against seven aces, there were as many as 28 direct errors. Player after player came back from the line shaking their heads. The reception also was not accurate and the setter Ilja Ivanov was not exactly able to use the central attack. Panu Pitkänen got a total of three passes and Antti Taponen four.
A group of Akaa-Volley fans had also arrived in Maribor. To their delight, the team's wing play fortunately worked effectively enough. The opposite Matěj Šmídl got 28/+14 and the statistics of outside spikers were: Jere Heiskanen 13/+4 and Mikko Räsänen 17/+6.
The teams will meet each other again at Akaa Areena on Wednesday 1 November at 6:30 p.m.
Team Akaa-Volley will host OK Maribor in the coming week.