In the first set we skinned them alive. Really. We were leading for the whole time. Pantić was on top. It was tough only once when they narrowed the standing to 19:20. We had to take quick action. We did, we very quickly won the set to 21:25.
As I could understand from the official match report, we screwed up the 2nd set (red team won it to 25:15) only because we had 9 (!!!) service errors. Never mind, for the third part we picked ourselves together. We had more confidence, though after 12:14 the opponent equalized (17:17). But then came Buša and blocked the hell out of them. Pantić also brought his great form, we swept them off with 21:25.
In the 4th set the two teams vivisected each other. The last part brought a great battle with barely 1-point difference on both sides.
Then Zvezda jumped to 19:16.
Oh, no. There goes the set, the match, the final, the championship title.
Veličković blocked them to death. We equalized (19:19). Lopar blocked, we took back the lead (21:22). Zvezda was right behind us (22:23), but at this point Partizan was like a nuclear plant moments before explosion. Buša brought the points, Jokanović served, Zvezda could make a little, just a very little trouble at the very end, at the match ball, but they couldn’t rough us up. The victory was ours. We won the set to 23:25 and the match to 1:3. Next round on Tuesday, 12th.
Crvena Zvezda: Okolić (14), Jevtić (libero), Đurđević, Skrbić, Gmitrović (2), Milutinović (8), Jakovljević (20), Stojsavljević (5), Munćan, Blagojević (17), Veljović, Buculjević
Head coach: Dragan Kobiljski
OK Partizan: Buša (14), Pantić (16), Nedeljković, Žugić, Lopar (12), Kostić (1), Rajković (libero), Jokanović, Veličković (18), Polomac (6), Popović (1), Perišić
Head coach: Vladimir Vasović
Photos from the match: