USA open Olympic campaign with victory over Belgium

ROTTERDAM, The Netherlands, August 9, 2019 - Triple Olympic champions USA had to fight hard against Belgium to kick start their campaign for a ticket to the Tokyo 2020 Games with a 3-1 (25-20, 25-19, 17-25, 25-18) win in Pool B. Aaron Russell and Mathew Anderson led USA with 19 and 17 points, respectively.

In Ningbo, China, Argentina began their qualification campaign with a 3-1 (25-23, 22-25, 27-25, 25-23) edge against Canada in Pool F. Facundo Conte had 24 points as the best Argentinean while Nicholas Hoag had 19 for Canada.

In Saint Petersburg, Russia, Iran started with a win, as they edged Cuba in the tough five-set match 3-2 (23-25, 26-28, 25-17, 25-16, 15-10) in Pool E. Ali Shafiei scored 20 points for Iran, while Osniel Melgarejo and Marlon Yang each had 15 for Cuba.

Also in Saint Petersburg, Russia outclassed Mexico 3-0 (25-15, 25-11, 25-17) with the support of the home crowd in the first game of their Olympic qualifiers. Dmitriy Muserskiy topped Russia with 8 points and Daniel Vargas had 9 for Mexico.

In Varna, Bulgaria,  the reigning Olympic champions Brazil began their qualifying campaign with a quick straight-set win over Puerto Rico (25-23, 25-19, 25-19) in the first match in Pool A. Ricardo Lucarelli was the top scorer of his team with 14 points. Pablo Guzman accounted for 11 of Puerto Rico's.