Superlega 2023 - News.

Sir’s star setter Simone Giannelli in atack against Rana Verona (source: legavolley.it)

Sir’s star setter Simone Giannelli in attack against Rana Verona

A clash between Sir Susa Vim Perugia and Rana Verona highlights the programme of the upcoming 18th leg of Italy’s SuperLega Credem Banca regular season, with two games scheduled on Saturday, February 10, and another four on Sunday, February 11.

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Last week, the reigning club world champions and holders of the Supercoppa Italiana and Coppa Italia trophies from Perugia suffered a rare upset, losing on the road at Gas Sales Bluenergy Piacenza and interrupting an eight-game winning streak between the league and the cup. So, as they return to their home ground at the Pala Barton on Sunday at 16:00 local time (15:00 UTC) for their fixture with Rana Verona, they will surely be keen to get back on the winning track. Sir are second in the current standings on 40 points and a 13-4 win-loss record. The visitors from Verona are also riding the wave of a great run. They have lost only two of their 10 most recent matches, both to reigning champions and SuperLega table leaders Itas Trentino Trento, and have risen to the sixth place in the standings on 28 and 10-7.

In the head-to-head series between the two clubs, Sir are on an impressive 17-game winning streak that started some eight years ago. The last time the team from Verona was able to beat the opponents from Perugia was way back in March 2016. When Rana hosted Sir in late November for a seventh-leg encounter, the visitors produced a convincing 3-0 (25-18, 25-20, 25-22) shutout, with Ukrainian outside hitter Oleh Plotnytskyi and Cuban opposite Jesus Herrera leading the way with 14 points each, while Verona’s Slovenian outside Rok Mozic delivered a match-high 16 points.

Verona vs. Perugia | Highlights | Superlega | 7a Giornata

In another high-level encounter between top-eight teams, Gas Sales Bluenergy Piacenza, currently third on 35 and 11-6, will welcome seventh-placed Mint Vero Volley Monza, on 25 and 8-9, for the leg’s opening match on Saturday at 17:30 (16:30). Gas Sales will be looking to build upon last week’s impressive win over Sir, while Vero Volley will aim to bounce back from their two consecutive defeats and stay well within reach of better starting positions for the playoffs. Earlier this week, Vero Volley achieved an important success in European competition, eliminating Türkiye’s Galatasaray HDI Istanbul on the way to the CEV Challenge Cup final.

“Now we will have a very complicated period between the SuperLega and the European final. First, we need a little rest and, then, we want to get to Saturday's match against Piacenza in the best possible way.” Gianluca Galassi, middle blocker of Mint Vero Volley Monza

It will be the 11th encounter between the two clubs. The team from Monza has won six of the previous 10, including the most recent three. In November, they engaged in a hard-fought five-set battle in Monza as Vero Volley emerged victorious with a 3-2 (22-25, 25-21, 19-25, 25-20, 15-12) win. Their Canadian opposite Eric Loeppky was the best scorer of that match with 21 points, while Cuban-born Brazilian star Yoandy Leal led Gas Sales with 19 points.

Monza vs. Piacenza | Highlights | Superlega | 7a Giornata

Saturday’s programme will also offer a duel between the first and the last in the standings. Leaders Itas Trentino Trento (46, 16-1) will visit SuperLega rookies Farmitalia Catania (5, 1-16) at 18:30 (17:30).

11th-placed Gioiella Prisma Taranto (11, 2-15) will entertain fourth-placed Cucine Lube Civitanova (32, 12-5) on Sunday at 18:00 (17:00). At the same starting time, 10th-placed Pallavolo Padova Padua (14, 5-12) will host fifth-placed Allianz Milan (29, 9-8).

In a direct battle for a spot above the cut-off for the playoffs, ninth-placed Valsa Group Modena (19, 8-9) and eight-placed Cisterna Volley (22, 7-10) will close the competition weekend with a game starting at 19:00 (18:00).

SuperLega Credem Banca 2023-2024 18th leg:
Feb 10, 17:30 local (16:30 UTC): Gas Sales Bluenergy Piacenza v Mint Vero Volley Monza
Feb 10, 18:30 local (17:30 UTC): Farmitalia Catania v Itas Trentino Trento
Feb 11, 16:00 local (15:00 UTC): Sir Susa Vim Perugia v Rana Verona
Feb 11, 18:00 local (17:00 UTC): Gioiella Prisma Taranto v Cucine Lube Civitanova
Feb 11, 18:00 local (17:00 UTC): Pallavolo Padova Padua v Allianz Milan
Feb 11, 19:00 local (18:00 UTC): Valsa Group Modena v Cisterna Volley