Date: 11 April 2019, 00:04
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KAZAN claim repeat of Clash of Titans to vie for seventh #CLVolleyM crown

Zenit KAZAN lived up to their status of leading force in European Volleyball by claiming also the repeat of the ‘Clash of the Titans’ with Sir Colussi Sicoma PERUGIA of Italy.

After their 3-2 away victory last week, the Russian armada stormed to a 3-1 win at home at the end of another dramatic, exciting game to stay in contention for an all-time record seventh #CLVolleyM title, what would be their fifth in a row. Wilfredo Leon returned to Kazan for the first time after leaving the Russian club at the end of the last season but he could not help PERUGIA overcome his former team.

Zenit KAZAN (RUS) vs. Sir Colussi Sicoma PERUGIA (ITA) 3-1 (22-25, 25-23, 25-23, 26-24)

•    Zenit KAZAN have reached the Champions League final for the fifth time in a row. The club from Kazan has swept the top honours of the competition for the last four years running.
•    Zenit KAZAN edged Sir Colussi Sicoma PERUGIA in the Champions League for the fourth time – while scoring their 11th straight victory in matches with Italian opposition.
•    In the capital of Tatarstan, Wilfredo Leon played for the first time since leaving Zenit KAZAN in the summer of 2018. Tonight 5,000 spectators watched him in action against his former teammates – the Saint Petersburg Arena was literally packed.
•    Zenit KAZAN setter Alexander Butko suffered a serious ankle injury at the outbreak of the first set, but he still managed to play solid until the end of the match.

Earvin Ngapeth, outside hitter of Zenit KAZAN: “I am happy. I moved to Zenit KAZAN for the sake of the Champions League and I really want to win this competition. The whole team played great. Not everything has worked out well for us this season, but in the semi-finals with PERUGIA, we finally showed a top performance. We managed to play our game and I am so happy now.”

Vladimir Alekno, head coach of Zenit KAZAN: “We are going to the final. We have a real team. Our players are not afraid of running into and jumping over the billboards, playing with injured ankles, they are always ready to put up a fight in any situation. It is the most important thing.”

Lorenzo Bernardi, head coach of Sir Colussi Sicoma PERUGIA: “The game was very tense and hard, as expected. Every single point counted - one successful defence or block. I am proud of my players who did so well with one of the strongest teams in the world. Leon is only part of the team, he cannot win alone.”