OKBet Women’s World Championship
OKBet Women’s World Championship China advanced to the second pool round of the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship 2022 after defeating Japan 3-0 (28-26, 25-17, 29-27) on Wednesday at the GelreDome in Arnhem at OKBet Sports Volleyball.
As a result on OKBet Volleyball, China remained undefeated in the pool and topped the current rankings with a perfect record of three victories, nine points, and a 9-0 set ratio, which is already enough to assure a top-four finish in the final Pool D standings. Before Wednesday’s remaining pool matches, Brazil vs. Colombia at 15:00 local time (13:00 GMT) and Argentina vs. Czechia at 18:00 (16:00), the Brazilians are second with a 2-0 record and six points, followed by Japan with a 2-1 record and six points, and winless Czechia, Argentina, and Colombia with zero points each. The top four teams from each of the four round-robin pools will proceed to the tournament’s second pool round.
China outperformed Japan in all scoring categories, but most notably in blocking, with 11 stuffs to Japan’s two at OKBet Volleyball. Wang Yuanyuan, the middle blocker, shone out with five kill blocks, while outside hitter Li Yingying scored 19 points, all on offense, to share the top scorer and top spiker honors with her Japanese rival Arisa Inoue. Middle blocker Haruyo Shimamura earned the first break point of the match, giving Japan a 3-2 lead, but China responded quickly, scoring five points in a row to go up 7-3, including two aces by opposite Xiangyu Gong for 4-3 and 6-3. Japan came back to tie the game at 12-12 on a two-handed overpass kill by setter Nanami Seki, but China took control with a four-point series capped by an ace from outside hitter Wang Yunlu for a 17-14 victory. Japan reclaimed the lead at 19-19 after to a spike by opponent Kotona Hayashi, sparking an intense sprint for the set. It was point for point until Wang Yunlu’s massive block for 28-26 put a stop to it all in favor of China.
China took an early 4-2 lead in the second set and never looked back. They thoroughly controlled the court, with Li Yingying at the helm of the offense. The Chinese got out with a big lead and then stayed pace to capture the set, scoring points in groups of three or four, one of which was capped by an ace from middle blocker and captain Yuan Xinyue for 11-6. Wang Yunlu closed it out at 25-17 with another off-the-block stroke.
China also began brightly in the third set, swiftly opening a three-point lead at 6-3. While Japan was attempting to rebound, its captain, Sarina Koga, injured her ankle landing after a block and had to leave the court at 13-11. As though this event had pumped up her teammates at OKBet Volleyball, they were soon in ahead with a 16-15 advantage following two straight kills by Hayashi. They sustained the pressure on, increasing their advantage to 23-20 until China responded with four consecutive points, capped by Gong’s successful swing for a 24-23 match point. Mayu Ishikawa’s ace reversed the tables for a 25-24 Japanese set point. That and two further match points were denied before Yuan converted the following match point with a huge block to give China a 29-27 victory.
China’s next encounter is on Friday at 14:00 local time versus Czechia (12:00 GMT). Japan’s game versus Brazil will begin a quarter-hour later.
“It was a tough contest, but we played extremely well,” Li Yingying stated after the game. “We arrived in the Netherlands one week before the competition began, so everyone is fully prepared and doing their jobs to the best of their abilities.” This is how we won the game. Today, my attack was pretty nice, but my serve was not that fantastic, so I hope to improve in the next match.”
Wednesday’s schedule includes some thrilling matchups in the other pools. The match between Thailand and Croatia in Pool B in Gdansk has already ended with a 3-0 (25-18, 25-13, 25-21) triumph for the Asian side. Turkey and the Dominican Republic will face off at 17:30 (15:30), while Poland will host Korea at 20:30. (18:30). In Arnhem, the Netherlands will face Puerto Rico in a Pool A match beginning at 20:00. (18:00) at OKBet.
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