Raptis and Milenkoski supporters gave the title to PAOK - Sportish
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Raptis and Milenkoski supporters gave the title to PAOK



Kostas Holidis writes about the great performance of Alexandros Raptis, who however had the valuable help of his teammates to lead PAOK to the title against Olympiakos.

PAOK lifted their fifth trophy in their history on Saturday night after beating Olympiakos 3-1 in an impressive final.

However, Dikefalos took that particular trophy, and whoever wins it later in the year, well before that. When Josko Milenkoski was ready to leave, the team management decided to support him and the result justifies it.

Since then, PAOK have steadily improved and confirmed in Kalamata that they are the best team in Greece this season.

The Tailor’s Rhapsody

We couldn’t start the finale’s commentary from anything other than MVP. Last summer, Alexandros Raptis left Panathinaikos for PAOK.

The reason; To find a stable and important role in a team that is aiming for the title. At the age of 23, Alexandros Raptis performed like a dream.

He held the slot, attacked with 76% spatiality (25/33 attacks with just one miss) and three aces. What more could Milenkoski ask of his winger, who stopped at 28 points.

The team turned the tables

As the MVP, Alexandros Raptis said in his statements, the whole team had to do a lot of work for him to make this appearance.

In particular, Kokkinakis and Giorna swept the back zone, Walsh did an excellent job splitting the game after the first set, Skrentau and Voulkidis helped with blocking and attacking, while Den Dries’ contribution was also important.

The stats might say that the Belgian had 30% attacking with 12/40, but he helped with his serves as well as his blocks (4).

Everyone worked to ensure PAOK could turn the tide of the first set and claim the title.

The decisive point of the final

The final was undoubtedly decided in the second half of the third set. Olympiacos entered first 17-13, but the rest belonged entirely to PAOK.

Dikephalos managed to run away 12-4 at this point, with Dan Dries and Rapti doing an excellent job on offense. A pressing serve and an excellent block defense led PAOK to surprise.

PAOK essentially confirmed the image it had shown us in the game series against Panathinaikos, playing excellently and having many protagonists.

Shorted from Travica, low flying from Hidalgo

Now we come to the defeated Olympiakos. Giuliani’s players traveled to Kalamata in high spirits, just as they did after qualifying against Panathinaikos in the Challenge Cup semifinals.

However, in the final against PAOK, only in the first set did they show the image we’ve been accustomed to seeing them for the last month or so. In the third shot on goal, they simply took advantage of Dikefalos’ many mistakes, but also their excellent block.

But what was the big problem of Olympiacos? The main thing was that it clouded Travis’ mind. The big passer saw that Stern was having a good day (Slovene had 17/37 attacks) and attacked him.

In fact, he overwhelmed him as he took more balls than Pagenk (11), Koumentakis (15) and Linardos (7) combined. At the same time, Hidalgo appeared to be fully read by the PAOK block, breaking many balls in his attacks, with the Cuban counting disappointing 8/26 attacks.

Both titles the next day

The Cup Final Four concluded as PAOK received a huge psychological injection for the sequel. Dikefalos and Olympiacos are likely to be the couple in the championship final.

Both lead 2-0 each against Panathinaikos and Milos, so they only need one win to clinch the title, with Olympiakos having the home field advantage.

At the same time, we must not forget that the Red-Whites also have the League Cup final with Panathinaikos, which may have less prestige, but especially when the Greens are no longer fighting for the championship, they will want it more.

Anyway, for about 45 more days we will watch great duels in men’s and women’s volleyball.

Source: sport 24

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Castellani follows Giuliani on the Olympiacos bench




Olympiacos announced the start of their collaboration with Daniel Castellano, who will replace Alberto Giuliani on the Red-Whites bench.

A few days after Alberto Giuliani left the men’s volleyball team from Olympiacos Piraeus, the Red and Whites announced his successor, Daniel Castellani, on Friday (2 June).

The relevant announcement from Olympiakos:

OLYMPIAN SFP announces the start of its collaboration with Daniel Castellani. The Argentine coach (born March 21, 1961) takes over the technical management of the club’s men’s volleyball team.

Considered one of the greatest volleyball players in the world, Thrylos’ new coach has had a long career at both national and collective levels. With 19 titles and many medals, he is ranked 58th in the world rankings of coaches.

Daniel Castellani is the national coach of the Argentina women’s national team, while he also worked for the men’s team in the past (1994-99). On a national level, the 62-year-old coach was also in Poland, with whom he won the gold medal at the 2009 European Championships, and in Finland.

In his first “term” at Fenerbahce, Daniel Castellani won three Polish championships with Skra, two more in Argentina with Bolivar and one in Turkey. He also won the Challenge Cup with the Turkish team in 2013/14.

Daniel Castellani’s statement on olympiacossfp.gr: “Hello everyone, I am very happy to join the Olympiacos family, a huge club. Olympiacos have great fans, it’s an honor and a big challenge for me! When the club contacted me and I saw his ambitions, the highly competitive team he has built and his history, I knew straight away that he was a huge motivator for me. That’s why I said: I want to be there! We will work hard to stay competitive and fight for more trophies. We’ll be together shortly.


  • 1 European Championship (2009, Polish men’s national team)
  • 1 Pan American Championship (1995, Argentina men’s national team)
  • 1 Hubert Wagner Monument (2009, Polish men’s national team)
  • 1 Brazilian Championship (2018-19)
  • 1 Challenge Cup (2013-14)
  • 3rd Polish Championship (2006–07, 2007–08, 2008–09)
  • 1st Turkish Championship (2011-12)
  • 3 Polish Cups (2006–07, 2008–09, 2012–13)
  • 1st Turkish Cup (2011-12)
  • 2 Argentine Championships (2002–03, 2003–04)
  • 2 Paulista Championship (2017–18, 2018–19)
  • 1 Belgian Super Cup (2016–17)
  • 1. Turkish Super Cup (2011-12)

Previous teams:

  • 1994-99 Argentina Men’s National Team
  • 2001-02 Telephonica Volley GioiaItaly (Italy)
  • 2002–06 Bolivar Volley (Argentina)
  • 2006-09 PGE Skra Bełchatów (Poland)
  • 2009–10 Poland men’s national team
  • Finland men’s national team 2012
  • 2011-12 Fenerbahce (Türkiye)
  • 2012-13 ZAKSA Kędzierzyn-Koźle (Poland)
  • 2013-15 Fenerbahce (Türkiye)
  • 2015-16 Sir Safety Conad Perugia (Italy)
  • 2016-17 Noliko Maaseik (Belgium)
  • 2017-18 EMS Taubaté Funvic (Brazil)
  • 2019-21 Indykpol AZS Olsztyn (Poland)
  • 2021-23 Fenerbahce (Türkiye)
  • 2023 – Argentina Women’s National Team

Source: sport 24

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PAOK men’s volleyball: Significant reinforcement with Van Garderen




PAOK has reached an agreement with international Dutch winger Maarten van Garderen, who has been playing in the top European leagues for several years.

The PAOK men’s volleyball team has found Maarten van Garderen, the player who will form the main winger duo with Rousseau.

The Netherlands international arrives in our country with a full CV, having played in Europe’s top leagues for the past 12 years.

Last year, the 33-year-old (2m tall) played in Siena and scored 203 points with a shot rate of 41.8%. He’s an absolute tight end and a little behind on the receiving end (not that he’s unreliable).

After this move, PAOK completed the foreign winger duo and now the burden is on the foreign passer.

Announcement by PAOK: “PAOK and the Men’s Volleyball Division announce the start of a collaboration with athlete Maarten Van Harderen for the 2023-2024 season.

Maarten Van Harderen was born on January 24th, 1990 in the Netherlands. He plays as a winger and is 200 cm tall.

He started his professional career in the 2006/07 season with Dutch club Langhenkel Doetinchem, where he stayed for five seasons, won a Dutch championship and made his first European appearances when he took part in the CEV Challenge Cup.

In the 2012-13 season he played for Caffè Aiello Corigliano in Italy, in the following season (2013-14) in France at Beauvais Oise UC.

In the 2014-15 season, he took the first big step of his career, playing in Germany for the mighty VfB Friedrichshafen, with whom he won the “Double” while also reaching the “8” of the CEV Champions League.

He played in Italy again in the 2015–16 season, this time for CMC Romagna, while the following year (2016–17) he stayed in Serie A to play for Bunge Ravenna.

In the 2017/18 season he played for Azimut Modena from Italy and in the following season (2018/19) for Itas Trentino, with whom he won the Club World Cup.

In the 2020/21 season, he played outside of Italy for Turkey’s Ziraat Bankası Ankara, with whom he won the championship.

The following year (2021-22) he returned to Italy for Leo Shoes PerkinElmer Modena, with which he reached the “8” of the CEV Cup. Last season he stayed in the Italian league for Emma Villas Aubay Siena and remained at a high level.

He is an international player of the Netherlands national team whose milestone was conquering the European Golden League in 2012.

He is an athlete with many performances at the highest level, who has played in top-class leagues as well as in the highest cross-club competition, the CEV Champions League.”

Source: sport 24

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Men’s Olympic Volleyball: Giuliani’s “farewell” to the red-whites




With his post on social media, curated by Alberto Giuliani, he said goodbye to Olympiakos and thanked him for his collaboration.

Alberto Giuliani said goodbye to Olympiacos. The Italy coach is set to continue his career in Bulgaria and said goodbye to the red-white squad via social media.

“It’s been a special year for me, not only because of the great results we’ve achieved together, but mostly because I’ve had the opportunity to meet wonderful and very special people.” I thank the whole Olympiakos club, the staff, the fans and all the players. Good bye” he wrote characteristically.

Source: sport 24

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