Dubai, United Arab Emirates, August 28, 2015 – Korea won a hard-fought match against a valiant Egypt team 3-1 (25-20, 25-18, 19-25, 25-22) in Pool A match of the first round of the 2015 FIVB Men’s U23 World Championship at Al Nasr Hall in Dubai, United Arab Emirates on Friday.
Kim Sungmin's swooping spikes from all over the court ultimately gave the Koreans a narrow edge in a close match which could have gone the Egypt's way with lead changes, hustle plays and long rallies.
Sungmin led the winners' chart with 21 points followed by Jung Jeseok who scored 16. From the loser side Ahmed Shafik contributed 19 points including 5 stuff blocks followed by Abdelrahman Abouelela 10.
The Korean team surprised the Egyptians with the quick attacks throughout all the net positions in the first set as the Asian team used the combinations led by the setter Ha Seungwoo to penetrate their undisciplined blockers. Korea had a wide lead 8-2 at the 1st TTO, before they used the unstable Egyptian defence for 16-10 score at the 2nd TTO. later Egypt improved their reception relatively to came close, but Korea finished the job at 25-20.
Egypt started aggressively in the second set using the spikes of Ahmed Shafik and the good blocking form Mohamed Soliman to lead 4-0 and stayed ahead 8-3 in the TTO. Korea surprisingly came back with lots of sharp attacks to regain the lead as they made it 2-0 after closing the set at 25-18.
Egypt coach transferred his star Shafik from outside hitter to opposite and fielded Ahmed Alashry as middle blocker, so they were ahead 8-7 in 16-14 in TTO. They blocked well to win the set 25-19 to narrow the score to 2-1 for Korea.
Early in the 4th set Korea regained their rhythm to lead 16-12, but with tight blocks and quick attacks, Egypt came closer and draw 17-17. With a stuff block from Soliman Egypt led for the first time 18-17. Korea's Hwang Kyungmin and Jung Jiseok played a great role to finish the set 25-22 and the match 3-1.