Cuban-born former Trentino Volley star Osmany Juantorena made his first appearance for Italy at the Melinda Volley Cup in Trento
Trento, Italy, August 28, 2015 - New Italy coach Gianlorenzo Blengini's team, featuring Cuban-born Osmany Juantorena, have defeated Argentina 3-0 (25-16 25-17 25-22) in the run-up to the FIVB Volleyball Men's World Cup.
Ivan Zaytsev was Italy's top scorer with 22 points. The fans at the Melinda Volley Cup match held at PalaTrento also witnessed Juantorena's first call-up for the Italian national team - the Cuban-born outside hitter has enjoyed a distinguished career as a club player. He won four golds with local club Trentino Volley at the FIVB Volleyball Men's Club World Championships from 2009 to 2012 - he also played for the Cuban national team from 2003 to 2006.
The FIVB Volleyball Men's World Cup takes place in Hiroshima, Osaka, Hamamatsu, Toyama and Tokyo from September 8-23, where twelve teams will compete for two berths at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
Italy will play their first match against Canada in Hiroshima on September 8. They will also take on Australia, Egypt, USA and hosts Japan in the first round. The Italians' only World Cup title dates back to 1995, when they finished ahead of the Netherlands and Brazil.
Argentina are also preparing for the World Cup. The recent Pan-American Games gold medallists will play Iran, Venezuela, world champions Poland, Russia, and Tunisia in Round 1.