SPORTS

Herculean victory over a hapless Olympiakos

Iraklis triumphed over a disappointing Olympiakos 3-0 in Piraeus on the opening day of the A1 volleyball league on Saturday. The major problems that Olympiakos had with its defense as well as a poor showing by German setter Simon Tischer and his Serb opposite Ivan Miljkovic allowed Iraklis to score an easier-than-expected win at the Rendi Sports Hall. Iraklis took the first set 25-20 and fared even better in the second (25-19), as its block ruled the net and the champion team was clearly below its usual standards. In the third set, Olympiakos could only follow the Thessaloniki side up to the ninth point, with the visitors winning 25-23. In the other matches on Saturday, Panathinaikos returned from Kalamaria with a 3-0 win over local Apollon (25-23, 25-17, 31-29) and PAOK thrashed visiting Kifissia 3-0 (25-19, 25-23, 25-16). On Sunday, Aris got maximum points from its visit to AEK, winning 3-1 in the closest of the weekend’s games. Aris took the first set 25-19, AEK responded in the second (25-20) before Aris took the psychologically crucial third set (25-23) and completed its triumph with the fourth (25-21).