The national teams of Serbia and Italy will contest the final of the women’s 2021 CEV Volleyball European Championship in Belgrade on Saturday. With their stellar opposites, Tijana Boskovic and Paola Egonu, spearheading the offensive, the two squads claimed four-set victories over Turkey and the Netherlands, respectively, in Friday’s semifinals at the Stark Arena in the Serbian capital. This way, both Serbia and Italy have now booked their spots at the 2020 FIVB Volleyball World Championship in the Netherlands and Poland.

Boskovic produced an amazing 15 points in the first set of Serbia’s semifinal alone, but Turkey pushed it deep into overtime and took the lead. The home team snatched the next two sets by the narrowest of margins before completely dominating the fourth set to celebrate a 3-1 (32-34, 28-26, 25-23, 25-13) win. The Serbian opposite tallied 39 points towards the victory and took over the top of the tournament’s scorers chart on a total of 195 points, 20 clear of the previous leader, Sweden’s Isabelle Haak. Turkey’s Ebrar Karakurt scored 23 times and improved to fourth in the EuroVolley ranking on a total of 132 points.

“It’s an incredible feeling to play third EuroVolley final in a row! I am really proud of everything we did so far. Today’s game was crazy. Turkey were a great opponent, but I am happy about how we did not give up after they won the first set, and how we finished this game,” Boskovic said after the semifinal.

Paola Egonu is currently the third best scorer of the competition. She upped her tally to 164 after delivering the match high 24 points (including four kill blocks and an ace) in Italy’s 3-1 (25-19, 25-17, 16-25, 25-18) win over the Netherlands. Her teammate Anna Danesi made six stuffs towards a total of 17 points.

Thousands of fans are expected to flock to the Stark Arena in Belgrade for the medal matches on Saturday. The final between Serbia and Italy is set to start at 20:05 local time. Before that, at 17:00, Turkey and the Netherlands will lock horns for the bronze.