Sydney, Australia, June 27, 2015 – Ricardo Lucarelli fired 18 points to lead Brazil in their 3-1 (25-17, 25-18, 23-25, 25-20) win over Australia in Pool A of the FIVB Volleyball World League at the Sydney Olympic Park Arena on Saturday.
Lucarelli had 15 attacks, two blocks and one ace, while his team-mate Luis Felipe Fonteles and Wallace De Souza contributed 17 and 16 points, respectively. Returnee Thomas Edgar gave Australia 21 points from 19 attacks, one block and one ace.
Edgar’s made his presence felt in the opener as he scored the first point of the match, prompting his side to push further with the lead. Brazil recovered easily as Wallace stepped in to challenge Edgar on offence. Brazilian setter Bruno Rezende directed his hitters to put more pressure on the Australian defenders that gave them more cushion in the set 18-10. Edgar managed to score on some attacks for Australia but the Brazilians showed better team effort that closed the set 25-17.
Lipe took cue from Wallace’s strong performance in the first set to open the second set with a resilient swing from the flank. Lipe sparked the Brazilian offence that heralded a 16-10 lead for Brazil. Lucarelli and Wallace joined to stress the Australian defence further, while Edgar was Australia’s centre of offence. Brazil rallied to protect their lead until a favourable challenge decision ended the set 25-18.
Australia showed better focus and took a slim but constant lead in the third set. Brazil did not just allow the host team and worked harder to tie the score at 23-all but Thomas Ewen Douglas-Powell’s entry in the set gave Australia a breather as they took the 25-23 win in the third set from his block and service ace.
Australia and Brazil traded points at the start of the fourth set that resulted to a 4-4 deadlock. Brazil led 7-4 from three consecutive defensive stops at the net but Edgar tied it again at 7-all. Both teams exchanged leads and deadlocks with Brazil getting a 16-15 slim lead onto the second technical timeout and eventually survived the fourth set 25-20.
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