Zurich, Switzerland, May 9, 2015 - Eczacibasi VitrA Istanbul crushed the dreams of hosts Velero Zurich with a nail-biting 3-1 (25-17, 25-22, 18-25, 34-32) semifinal win that earns them a spot in Sunday's final of the 2015 FIVB Volleyball Women's Club World Championship.
Much to the delight of their noisy and colourful travelling fans (and it certainly felt more like Istanbul's Burhan Felek than Zurich's Saalsporthalle today), Eczacibasi held off the hosts as they attempted to come back for a tie-break. Some inspired digging in the back row proved decisive, as Volero struggled to find a way around the block of Maja Poljak and also failed to stop the creative attacking of Gozde Yilmaz and Jordan Larson-Burbach.
This was the third time in as many appearances that Volero enter the semifinals and then fail to qualify for the final of a Club World Championship.
However, though it may be small consolation for the club, Volero's opposite Olesia Rykhliuk is right on track to become an all-time top scorer in the history of the event, since the introduction of the running score system. The 28-year-old scored an impressive 28 points against Eczacibasi, to reach 76 in three matches so far. She now needs another nine to tie and ten to break the record of 85 held by Dinamo Kazan's Ekaterina Gamova from 2014. It'll all be decided in tomorrow's bronze medal match.
Follow the match, as it happened, here