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Serbia beats Austria, wins Pool A

zuschauer-topVienna, Austria, September 11, 2011. Serbia stayed unbeaten in Pool A on Monday by impressively defeating Austria 3-0 (25-16, 25-19, 25-16) in 69 minutes and advances directly to the quarterfinals. In Vienna’s Stadthalle the EuroVolley-co-host showed a much improved performance against the bronze medallist of the World Championships 2010 to bid a nice farewell to his fans, who once again increased the spectators record to 6.800.

Even without superstar Ivan Miljkovic, who was rested for the upcoming quarterfinal, Serbia had no problem finding the rhythm quickly. Pushed by an amazing crowd Austria could keed the opening set close until the second technical time out (13-16). Then the team of head coach Igor Kolakovic then engaged a higher gear and quickly pulled away to 25-16.

In the second set Austria stepped it up another notch, but still couldn’t keep the Serbians from scoring all the big points. The third set was even more lopsided as the pre-favorites for a medal viciously exploited Austria’s weaknesses with their perfect form even under the most difficult circumstances.

Starovic headed a balanced Serbian attack with 10 points, with Stankovic adding nine and Terzic contributing seven. Thomas Zass scored 13 points for Austria that will try to improve further and qualify for the next big event.

“I’m really satisfied with my team today. We now expect to meet France in the quarterfinals. This will be a really tough game, so I’m happy that we are getting two days of rest now. We will try to get physically and mentally ready for September 15th”, said Serbian head coach Igor Kolakovic.

“The technical precision of the Serbian players is impressive. We still have a lot to learn. In the first and second set, we could play on the same level for a long time, but suffered from bad stretches in the end. It was exciting to coach a team at European Championships, that didn’t have any international experience. We have always said, that the EuroVolley 2011 is just the beginning”, admitted Austrian head coach Michael Warm.