LONDON, August 11 (Itar-Tass) —— The head coach of the Russian men’s volleyball team, Vladimir Alekno, believes that on the way to the decisive match at the Olympics his trainees performed remarkably well. They beat Bulgaria 3-1 to reach the final, where they will clash with Brazil.
“Each year we have this d·j· vu effect. I would call it “success hysteria.” An expectation of someone making a mistake. This puts great psychological pressure on the team,” Alekno said.
“I am very pleased with the result. You may perform very well or not so well at the Olympic tournament. And sometimes everything turns out utterly wrong, contrary to what you may be hoping for. As for Bulgaria, we played very well against them.”
Captain Taras Khtei said that the team should now “relax, calm down and get ready for the decisive battle.”
“We did a good job, but a very daunting task is in store for us,” echoed Alexander Butko.
About the set lost in the match with Bulgaria he remarked: “Volleyball is like scales, the advantage may shift either way.”
Alexei Obmochayev says no team cannot be certain about the outcome of the final match in advance.
“We must just keep playing. What shall we do to prepare for the decisive match? Nothing special. Training as usual. I am glad that the silver is more than guaranteed. But we should stay on guard and compete for more.”