Cyprus and Luxembourg will fight for the title of the 2016 CEV U20 Volleyball European Championship – Men Small Countries Division on Sunday, after comfortable semi-final wins Saturday evening, as defending champions Scotland crashed out of the race for gold.
The hosts are hoping to reclaim the title they lost in 2014, when they stayed away from the competition, by winning their third gold in five editions of the event. Luxembourg will be looking at repeating their success of 2008, when they won their only gold in history so far.
In semi-final action, Cyprus fought hard for two sets against a plucky Scottish side, but then broke away 10-2 in the third set and never looked back. With Stephanos Haridimou getting 20 kills in 34 swings for 59% and scoring 22 points in all, Cyprus outplayed Scotland at the net, both in blocking and in attacking efficiency for a 3-0 (25-18, 25-18, 25-15) win.
Scotland had qualified to the semi-finals on a 3-0 (25-20, 25-12, 25-13) win earlier in the day over the Faroe Islands.
Earlier, Steve Weber scored 17 points while attacking for 57% (13/23) to lead Luxembourg to a crushing 3-0 (25-12, 25-10, 25-17) win over San Marino, as the Grand Duchy put their pressure on with their serving and out-blocked their opponents 12 stuffs to three.
San Marino had made it to the semi-finals with a morning 3-0 (26-24, 25-17, 25-13) over Northern Ireland.
San Marino and Scotland will vie for bronze on Sunday. It is a setback for the reigning champions, while San Marino will be looking at repeating their bronze-medal performances of 2006 and 2008.
Earlier in the day, debutants Faroe Islands will play 2014 bronze medallists Northern Ireland for fifth place.
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