Art And Culture

Iran Men’s Volleyball Team Qualifies for Rio Olympics

Iran Men’s Volleyball Team Qualifies for Rio OlympicsIran Men’s Volleyball Team Qualifies for Rio Olympics

Iran men’s national volleyball team qualified for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, after beating Poland 3-1 at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium on the 6th day of the Men’s World Olympic Qualification Tournament in Japan on Saturday.

Winning over Poland which were undefeated in their past five games in the tournament and had already made it to the Olympics, Iran’s feat is historic as it will be the team’s first-ever appearance in the Olympic Games, reported.

After beating Australia, Canada, Japan and China and only losing to France, Iran just needed one victory from their remaining two games against Poland and Venezuela.

President Hassan Rouhani, in a message, congratulated the Iranian nation on the advancement of Iran’s national volleyball team to the Rio Olympics, after 52 years.

Rouhani said “the valuable victory of the national volleyball team once again triggers pride and happiness across the country,” IRNA reported.

This win along with other victories against major world volleyball heavyweights has turned another golden page in the history of honors for the young Iranian people, said the president, and thanked the Iranian athletes, coaches and all those behind the victory. He further wished success for the Iranian squad in the Olympic games.

By the end of the 5th day of the tournament, Poland was the first team among the 8 battling for a position in the Rio 2016 Olympics. Even if Iran lost the game to Poland, they were hopeful of qualifying for the Olympics by overpowering Venezuela, which saw no wins on the last day.

However, beating powerhouse Poland, the Iranian players exhibited another major hit, proving Iran’s strength and finishing what they were expected to do from day one of the games, just one day before the tournament ended.

Iran had an excellent rhythm, while Poland blundered on their serves and attacks. Iran closed the first two sets 25-20 and 25-18, the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) website reported.

In the third set, Poland had better offensive patterns and took the set 25-20. Iranian players did not relinquish and recovered from the set loss. Both teams continued to notch points; it was a point-by-point challenge, but finally Iran managed to win the set 34-32, meaning a 3-1 victory against one of the best teams in the world.

The Iranian team’s Argentinean head coach Raul Lozano said after the victory, “I feel immensely happy. It is special because it is a historic moment for Iran. The people of Iran have been waiting for this chance to go to the Olympics for a long time.”

Captain Saeed Marouf said, “It’s time to celebrate. We didn’t qualify four years ago, losing out by one set to Australia and it was a bad memory for us. This might have been the last chance for some Iran players to make the Olympics. We have made history”.

Rio Olympic Games will start on August 5 and will run through August 21.