Grozer’s return makes Germany stronger in their Road to Paris

Grozer’s return makes Germany stronger in their Road to Paris
Fecha de publicación: 
2 October 2023
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Absent from the German squad during the 2023 Volleyball Nations League, opposite György Grozer is proving how pivotal he is to the country’s national team this week during the Volleyball Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Rio de Janeiro.

With the 38-year-old Grozer in excellent form, the Germans became just the second team to get to two victories in Pool A on Sunday and continue strong in the race for one of the two spots in play at the Paris 2024 Olympics.

  • Watch all matches of the Men's Volleyball Olympic Qualifying Tournament on VBTV

After delivering 23 points in the German opening-match victory over Iran on Saturday, Grozer improved his production by one point against Cuba, leading the Europeans to a 3-1 (21-25, 25-14, 25-22, 25-15) victory on Sunday, with 22 kills, one block and one ace.

“Cuba served really well on the first set and we had a lot of trouble,” setter Johannes Tille said. “When they serve like that, they are difficult opponents to anyone. From the second set on, we were able to play in our rhythm and took control of the match.”


Born in Hungary, Grozer has a strong connection with the German national team, having first competed internationally for the country in 2007. The opposite has announced his international retirement twice, in 2016 and 2020, but on both occasions, he returned to the team later.

One of just three players that represented Germany in their most recent Olympic appearance, in London 2012, to continue with the team, Grozer sat out of the VNL 2023 to better prepare for the Olympic Qualifier. He returned to action during the CEV European Championship and was Germany’s main scorer in the tournament. That’s also the case during the Olympic Qualifier as his 47 points rank him third overall, considering all three pools.


After taking Monday off, the Germans will get back on the court and play back-to-back matches against the two favorites of the pool, facing Brazil on Tuesday and Italy on Wednesday. If they get to win at least one of these two matches, the Europeans will be well-positioned to qualify.

“These are obviously expected to be the most difficult opponents in the tournament, but the truth is that there’s not a single easy match here,” Tille added. “We’re also looking forward to playing Brazil in front of a full stadium.”

Volleyball Olympic Qualifying Tournament - Match Schedule and Results

The first team to secure two wins in Rio, hosts Brazil had to sweat against Czechia on Sunday and were pushed to five sets, but walked away with a 3-2 (22-25, 25-16, 25-20, 21-25, 16-14) victory thanks to a 23-point performance from opposite Darlan Souza.


World champions Italy also remain undefeated after the second day of action at the Maracanãzinho - on Sunday, they dominated Qatar to a 3-0 (25-19, 25-20, 25-19) victory. Outside hitter Alessandro Michieletto led all scorers with 14 points, followed by middle blocker Gianluca Galassi, with nine.

In the last match of the day, Ukraine secured their first win in the event, sweeping Iran 3-0 (25-19, 25-22, 25-17). Opposite Vasyl Tupchii led the Ukrainian offense with 16 points, one more than outside hitter Tymofii Poluian.

After a day without matches on Monday, the competition resumes on Tuesday with four duels - Iran vs. Qatar at 10:00 local time (17:00 UTC), Cuba vs. Czechia at 13:30 local time (20:30 UTC), Italy vs. Ukraine at 17:00 local time (00:00 UTC, Wednesday) and Brazil vs. Germany at 20:30 local time (03:30 UTC, Wednesday).

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