Half Lube at the Volleyball Nations League 2023. There are just a few hours left for the blue debut in the competition reserved for men’s national selections which opened today with the first matches in Canada and Japan. At the end of the three itinerant stages, the final stage will take place in Gdansk, Poland, from 19 to 23 July.
Seven red and whites have been called up by their respective national teams in the extended lists for the competition:
Fabio Balaso, Mattia Bottolo and Simone Anzani with the Italy shirt;
Barthelemy Chinenyeze, defending champion at the VNL with France;
Luciano De Cecco, captain of Argentina;
Marlon Yant, under the selection of Cuba;
Alex Nikolov, busy with his Bulgaria.
Immediately a cooking derby in Canada on the first day of competitions. At 10.30 pm today, in Ottawa, Italy world champions of free Balaso and spiker Bottolo (the central Anzani will join the group in the next stages) will find Argentina of setter De Cecco, captain of Lube and of the ‘albiceleste. Guaranteed show on the field for an important challenge at the debut of the event.
The great impact on Alex Nikolov’s debut in Japan and the 22 points scored by the Lube spiker, top scorer of his selection in the first match, weren’t enough to lead Bulgaria to victory. It was China who won the tie break on the Nagoya field with Jingyin Zhang’s 29 wins.
Tomorrow, Thursday 7 June, at 2 am Italian time, the Cuban national team of spiker Marlon Yant will make its debut in Ottawa against the hosts Canada. France will also be on stage tomorrow, at 11 am Italian time, against the world vice champions Poland in Japan, but Barthelemy Chinenyeze will join the group in the next stages.
THE AZZURRI CALENDAR (Italian game times)
Week 1 (Ottawa, Canada)
6 June: Italy-Argentina at 10.30pm
8 June: Italy-United States at 10.30pm
9 June: Italy-Cuba at 10.30pm
10 June: Germany-Italy at 7pm
Week 2 (Rotterdam, Netherlands)
21 June: Iran-Italy at 13.00
22 June: China-Italy at 13.00
23 June: Serbia-Italy at 8pm
25 June: Italy-Poland at 12.30
Week 3 (Pasay City, Philippines)
July 4th: Brazil-Italy at 5.00am
July 6: Canada-Italy at 9
7 July: Slovenia-Italy at 9
July 8: Japan-Italy at 13.00
Quarterfinals (Gdansk, Poland)
19 July at 5 and 8.30 pm
20 July at 17 and 20.30
Semi-finals (Gdansk, Poland)
22 July at 5 and 8.30 pm
Finals (Gdansk, Poland)
23 July 3-4 place at 17
23 July 1-2 place at 20.30