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Zenit Kazan seize Russian Superleague title

 
Kazan, Russia, April 7, 2016 – FIVB Volleyball Men’s Club World Championship runners-up Dinamo Kazan triumphed in the Russian Championship following their 3-1 (25-9, 26-28, 25-17, 25-21) home win over adversaries Dinamo Moscow on Wednesday.

There were no playoffs contested in the current season of the Russian Superleague and although there are still two rounds to play, Zenit Kazan’s victory came ahead of schedule after 24 matches. Zenit Kazan’s huge margin in the current standing prevented their rivals to catch up with them statistically.

“It is quite odd that we were crowned national champions without going through the playoffs, but today’s match with Dinamo Moscow was some kind of a final anyway,” Zenit Kazan setter Alexander Butko. “We were very much prepared for this and I am happy that this victory happened in Kazan. I understand that we have to keep on working hard to gain more success. Being crowned national champions at the end of the playoffs is probably fairer and more satisfying, at least in my opinion. After all, the regular season is marked by ups and downs, while the strongest team always comes out on top of the playoffs.”

The Russian champions will compete in Krakow to vie for their fourth crown against Europe’s elite teams in the 2016 CEV DenizBank Volleyball Champions League – Men Final Four, after capturing titles in 2008, 2012 and 2015. Kazan will open their Final Four bid against Asseco Resovia Rzeszow, their rivals in last year’s gold medal match.

With this recent success, Zenit Kazan will have another opportunity to earn the spot in the Men’s Club World Championship through the Champions League.

Zenit Kazan made their debut appearance as a wild card and finished third in the Men’s Club World Championship in 2009. They made a comeback two years later and ended up with another bronze in Doha, Qatar. In 2012, they dropped to fourth place after losing to PGE Skra Belchatow of Poland. Last year was their best finish as second-placers.

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