Coach Paolo Montagnani’s team had all three players returning from the World Cup available: Pinali, Van Garderen and Petric all started in the starting six and provided good performances. In the end the match report speaks of 19 points for Giulio Pinali, 16 for Nemanja Petric and 7 for Maarten Van Garderen. The blue world champion finished the test match with 70% in attack, 2 winning services and 3 scoring blocks, the Serbian with 54% in attack, 2 aces and 1 blocking, the Dutch with 44% offensive. All three played the first three sets of the test match, then leaving space and Pereyra as the opposite and the Raffaelli-Ngapeth couple in the band in the last set.
However, it was the first occasion in which coach Montagnani was able to use all these players. “I’m happy to finally be here with the team – said Nemanja Petric at the end of the match. – We are preparing for what lies ahead. The friendlies help you feel the pace of the match, so I’m happy to take part in these moments and I’m happy for the result that came from the pitch. Grottazzolina made us suffer, and this must be a positive aspect because we have been tested. The important thing is to train at your best and find the right pace for the championship ”.
Petric again: “I already know many guys who are part of this group, but we need to be together and to increase the harmony. I am enthusiastic about this adventure, I am happy here. We work well and I am convinced that the results will come. We will still have three friendlies before the start of the championship, they will be important and useful for us and for the coach and the technical staff. We will have to make the most of these appointments to train various aspects and find our game identity. Even the friendly match against Perugia on Wednesday 28 September will tell us, against a very strong opponent, how we are and will give us a clear image just a few days before the Super League kick-off. “