Questions answered as Trentino bask in Club Worlds glory
Trentino celebrate after their semifinal win over Fakel Novy Urengoy, before going on to write history at the 2018 FIVB Men's Club World Championship in Poland.
Can Zenit Kazan become the third team in the FIVB Men's Club World Championship to claim back-to-back titles?
No - not by a long shot. The defending champions crashed out early after defeats on consecutive nights to fellow Russians Fakel Novy Urengoy and to Italy's Cucine Lube Civitanova. Their 5th place finish is the lowest in their seven appearances at the Club World Championship and after playing in the final of the last three editions.
Coach Vladimir Alekno gives instructions to his players, but Zenit Kazan bowed out early at the 2018 FIVB Men's Club World Championship after back-to-back five-set defeats in their opening two matches.
Can Sada Cruzeiro return to the top of the world to tie the overall record of four titles in the FIVB Men's Club World Championship?
No - again by a long shot. The reigning Brazil and South American champions also departed Poland early after back-to-back defeats to Asseco Resovia Rzeszow and to Diatecx Trentino. As in the case of Kazan, this was the worst finish for Sada Cruzeiro in seven appearances at the Club World Championship (all consecutive since 2012).
Can Trentino claim a record fifth world title - their first in six years?
Indeed they did! Diatecx Trentino completed a remarkable return to the top of the world, six years after their last success, in 2012 in Doha. They beat Cucine Lube Civitanova 3-1 in the final of the 2018 FIVB Men's Club World Championship for their fifth title overall in the history of the competition. Trentino were world champions four times in a row from 2009 to 2012. They also won bronze medals in 2013 and 2016.
Captain Simone Giannelli, the tournament's best setter, holds the trophy aloft after Trentino triumphed over Lube in the final of the 2018 FIVB Men's Club World Championship in Czestochowa.
On the same note, can an Italian team regain the throne for the first time in six years and after having won gold in all the first eight?
Yes. And it was all settled after the semifinals, when Cucine Lube Civitanova and Diatecx Trentino both qualified to set up an all-Italian final for the first time in 26 years, since Misura Milan beat Sisley Treviso 3-2 in 1992.
List of FIVB Club World Champions:
1989 - Parma: Maxicono Parma (ITA)
1990 - Milan: Mediolanum Milan (ITA)
1991 - Sao Paulo: Il Messaggero Ravenna (ITA)
1992 - Treviso: Misura Milan (ITA)
2009 - Doha: Trentino BetClic Trento (ITA)
2010 - Doha: Trentino BetClic Trento (ITA)
2011 - Doha: Trentino Diatec Trento (ITA)
2012 - Doha: Trentino Diatec Trento (ITA)
2013 - Betim: Sada Cruzeiro Contagem (BRA)
2014 - Belo Horizonte: Belogorie Belgorod (RUS)
2015 - Betim: Sada Cruzeiro Contagem (BRA)
2016 - Betim: Sada Cruzeiro Contagem (BRA)
2017 - Krakow: Zenit Kazan (RUS)
2018 - Czestochowa: Diatecx Trentino (ITA).
Can a team other than from Italy, Brazil or Russia claim the title this year?
No. With Italy dominating the final, these remain the only three countries to have seen one or more of their clubs claim gold at an FIVB Men's Club World Championship.
Which, if any players, will get to break the 30-point mark in a single match?
None. Scoring was more evenly spread out than most previous editions of the competition. In fact, the tournament high in scoring was just 28 points by Egor Kliuka of Fakel Novy Urengoy in their match against PGE Skra Belchatow (3-2).
Egor Kliuka in action in the bronze medal match of the 2018 FIVB Men's Club World Championship. The 23-year-old outside hitter of Fakel Novy Urengoy registered the tournament's scoring high of 28 points earlier in the event.
Can any player beat the overall all-time scoring record of the Club World Championship?
No. Again for the same reason - scoring was more widely distributed in this World Championship than in other editions. Artur Udrys of bronze medallists Fakel Novy Urengoy was top scorer of the tournament with 81 points in five matches. This was short of the all-time record of 118 points by Bartosz Kurek of PGE Skra Belchatow from 2009, the first edition to be played under the rally scoring system.
Who will succeed Osmany Juantorena as MVP of the FIVB Club World Championship?
It was Trentino's outside hitter Aaron Russell. He became the second American to receive the award after Karch Kiraly in 1990 who was then playing for Italy's Il Messaggero Ravenna. Juantorena remains the only player to have been named Club World Championship MVP more than once: three times running from 2010 to 2012 (with Trentino) and again last year (with Lube).
Aaron Russell celebrates the last point in the final of the 2018 FIVB Men's Club World Championship, just minutes before being named MVP of the tournament.
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