In a thriller that went to five sets it was the Argentines who held their nerve to take bronze with three-time winners and defending champions Brazil leaving Tokyo 2020 empty-handed.
South America bragging rights went to Argentina in the men’s volleyball bronze medal match at the Ariake Arena on Saturday (7 August) beating Brazil in a five-set thriller. The Argentines beat the three-time Olympic champions 25-23, 20-25, 20-25, 17-25, 15-13 to win their second-ever Olympic medal, matching the bronze they won at Seoul 1988 – also in a match-up against their South American neighbours.
In a tight match it was Argentina who came out flying in the first set, taking it 25-23, but they had to hustle to do it.
A good response from Brazil in the second set, which they took 25-20, left it one set all, heading into the third of the best-of-five sets event,
Brazil won the third set by the same score, working all the angles on the court to leave them needing just one set to yet again usurp the Argentines.
But Brazil unravelled in the fourth, serving their second to last shot into the net to give Argentina set point, which they duly took, winning the penultimate set 25-17.
Argentina were in the ascendancy in the fifth and final set holding their nerve to stay just ahead of the Brazilians to claim bronze, with a 15-13 final-set score.
The Argentinians immediately celebrated by dancing and singing in the centre of the court while the Brazilians look bereft.
ROC take on France in the gold-medal final later in the day.