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Volleyball - 26. September 2014.

Down to seven undefeated teams in Italy

Lausanne, Switzerland, September 25, 2014 – The FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship Italy 2014 had one of eight undefeated teams heading into the third day of competition succumb to defeat.

Bulgaria took down then-undefeated Turkey to bolster their own chances to advance to the second round. That leaves Italy and Dominican Republic undefeated in Pool A, Brazil and Serbia 3-0 in Pool B, Russia and United States in Pool C, and China in Pool D. Out of that group of seven, only Brazil, China, Italy and Russia have not dropped a set.


Pool A
Germany turn back Tunisia – Germany won the first match of Day 3 in Pool A with a 3-0 (25-7, 25-12, 25-7) victory over Tunisia in Rome, marking the first time they have won consecutive 3-0 matches at the World Championship since 2010 – which was also the last time they won consecutive matches. The victory came with a price, though, as Germany’s Stefanie Karg suffered an injury early in the first set and taken to the hospital. Jennifer Pettke was the best scorer of the match with 11 points. Tunisian best scorer was Fatma Agrebi with six attacks on 18 attempts. Germany have won all five matches against teams from Africa in straight sets. The score of the first and third set were for Tunisia the worse of their 2014 World Championship. Germany improves to 2-1 with seven points, while Tunisia is 0-3.

Dominican Republic holds back Croatia upset bid in tiebreaker – Dominican Republic won the second tiebreaker of their FIVB Volleyball Women's World Championship Italy 2014 schedule in a no-ending match, defeating Croatia 3-2 (25-22, 25-13, 22-25, 24-26, 19-17). Dominican Republic won in five sets after leading 2-0 for the first time. This was their sixth five-set match at the world championship, but their first in which they let their opponent come back to 2-2 after leading 2-0. Gina Mambru for Dominican Republic was the top scorer of the match with 25 points, including 11 attacks points on 20 errorless swings in the opening set. Teammates Bethania De La Cruz added 15 points and Prisilla Rivera followed with 14 points. Croatia was led by Maja Poljak with 18 points and Mia Jerkov added 16 points. Dominican Republic scored nine aces in the match against Croatia’s five.

Italy continues to win three – Italy collected the third victory in the tournament without losing a set against Argentina. The final result is a clear 3-0 (25-17,25-17,25-16). Italy have won five successive World Championship matches in straight sets for the first time since 2006. - After two victories in a row Italy faced the No. 19 FIVB World ranking team. Italians held Argentina to 22 points in the 1982 World Championship, the only previous meeting in the competition. Argentina in the third match of this home Women’s World Championship edition. Nadia Centoni was the top scorer of the match with 16 points, Paula Nizetich was Argentina’s best scorer with 12 points. Italy out-classed Argentina at blocking 13-6.

Pool B
Brazilians sweeps past Canadians – Brazil comfortably beat Canada 3-0 (25-14, 25-8, 25-18) on the third day in Trieste to improve to 3-0 in the tournament. Brazil clinched their fifth win in a row against NORCECA teams. They had also won five in their previous 14 matches against North & Central American/Caribbean sides. Canada, now 1-2 in the 2014 World Championship, has not won a set against Brazil in any major FIVB competition, a span of five matches (1984 and 1996 Olympics, 1991 and 1995 World Cup, and 2003 World Grand Prix). Brazil is 2-0 against Canada in the World Championship – a 3-1 victory in the first stage of 1978 and in the second stage in 1982. Top scorer for Brazil was Jaqueline with 16 points, Sheilla had 12 and Fabiana 11. For Canada, Brittney Page scored 12 kills.

Serbia withstand spirited challenge from Cameroon – Serbia won against Cameroon 3-0 (25-17, 25-13, 16-14) in the afternoon match of Pool B in Trieste. Serbia have started with three wins for the third successive World Championship. Only Serbia and Russia have won their first three matches at the 2006, 2010 and 2014 World Championship. After winning a set versus Canada in their first World Championship in 2006, Cameroon was not able to go for another one. Serbia won all four World Championship meetings against CAVB nations in straight sets. The three points gained today allow Serbia to take second place in Pool B, just one point behind Brazil. Serbia’s top scorer was Jovana Brakocevic with 17 points, followed by Stefana Velijkovic with 14 points. Nana Tchoudjang was Cameroon’s top scorer with 15 points.

Bulgaria snap their World Championship losing streak – Bulgaria needed 128 minutes to defeat Turkey 3-2 (20-25, 25-23, 25-18, 25-27, 15-12) in Pool B on Thursday in Bari to snap their five-match losing streak at the World Championship. Bulgaria won a five-set match for the first time at the World Championship in 28 years, since beating Brazil in 1986. Bulgaria had just lost a five-set match to Serbia on day two, but reversed the result 24 hours later against Turkey. This was the first meeting for Turkey and Bulgaria in a Women’s World Championship. Turkey won the last European Championship meeting, a four-set win in 2005. Top scorer was Bulgaria’s Elitsa Vasileva with 26 points, followed by Dobriana Rabadzhieva with 23. Best scorer in the Turkish team was Neriman Ozsoy with 20 points, followed by Gozde Sonsirma and Kubra Akman both registering 17 points. Kubra Akman scored a new tournament record with 10 block kills.

Pool C
Thailand wins tough three-set over Mexico – Thailand went past Mexico in three thrilling sets (27-25, 36-34, 26-24) to get their first victory in Pool C in Verona. The 36-34 score in the second set broke the World Championship record, which was 35-33 when Japan played Brazil in 2010. Thailand beat Mexico for the first time at a World Championship, as this was the first meet between the two teams at a major tournament. Thailand profited from 28 errors by Mexico (on a total of 89 points). It was Thailand's first win at the 2014 world championships and their second straight-sets win at the world championship in history after a 3-0 victory against Croatia in 2010. Thailand had lost the previous two matches in Pool C in straight sets. Mexico have yet to win a match at the FIVB Women’s World Championship Italy 2014, where they only won one set against USA on Tuesday. Ajcharaporn Kongyot was the top scorer for Thailand with 22 points. On the Mexican side, Andrea Rangel scored 17 points, followed by Lizbeth Sainz and Dulce Carranza with 16 and 15 respectively.

Russia earn spot into second phase - Russia advanced to the second phase of the World Championship Italy 2014 seeing off Kazakhstan in straight sets (25-13, 25-21, 25-16) in Pool C at Verona. Russia won their 16th world championship match in a row, equalling their second-longest run set in 1962-70. Only between 1952 and 1962 they won more often (29 matches). Russia are yet to lose a set at this World Championship. Russia's win came in the first World Championship meeting between the countries. It was the third time Russia have played a former Soviet Union team at the World Championship and they also won on the previous two occasions (Ukraine in 1994 and Azerbaijian in 2006). Nataliya Goncharova was the top scorer on court with 14 points, followed by Tatiana Kosheleva and Irina Zaryazhko with 11 points. Kazakhstan relied on Sana Anarkulova and Inna Matveyeva, who both scored 10 points.

USA gain second round spot with sweep of Netherlands – USA got their ticket to the second round sweeping in straight sets (29-27, 25-21, 25-18) in Verona. United States became the only nation to win their first three matches in each of the last four World Championships (2002, 2006, 2010 and 2014). USA have beaten the Netherlands six times in six World Championship meetings. They have only previously won in straight sets on two occasions in 1956 and 2010. USA have only lost one set at this World Championship in the match against Mexico. Celeste Plak proved the safest choice for the Netherland’s attack with a total of 16 points scored.

Pool D
Azerbaijan win second tiebreaker, edge Puerto Rico – After a very balanced match, Azerbaijan beat Puerto Rico 3-2 (25-20, 24-26, 26-24, 15-25, 17-15) on the third day of Pool D in Bari. On the opening day of the tournament, Azerbaijan upset No. 3 Japan in another five-set thriller. Three of their four last wins at the world championship have come in the deciding fifth set. Azerbaijan won their only previous World Championship meeting with Puerto Rico (3-0 in 2006). Polina Rahimova scored 31 points in Azerbaijan's 3-2 win against Puerto Rico. It was the second time in three matches she scored 30+ points after 33 against Japan. Puerto Rico are winless in all previous 13 meetings with CEV sides at the World Championship, taking only one set. Aurea Cruz of Puerto Rico played in Italy for Joggins Altamura, an Apulian team on 2006-07. There were two opponent sisters' couples in the match: Oksana and Yelena Parkomenko for Azerbaijan, Sheila and Karina Ocasio for Puerto Rico.

Japan breaks streak against Cuba – World Grand Prix runner-up Japan beat Cuba 3-0 (25-19, 26-24, 25-23) for their second win in a row in pool D in Bari. With the victory in 78 minutes, Japan improved to seven points on a 2-1 win-loss record in pool D. Ebata Yukiko was the top scorer in the match with 13 points. Alena Rojas Orta led Cuba with 12. Cuba and Japan have met seven times at the World Championship and Japan broke a four-match losing streak to Cuba. Cuba had nine block points to Japan’s three. Their most recent meeting at a major tournament was at the 2012 World Grand Prix. Cuba beat Japan 3-1 in the preliminary round. Cuba have lost their first three World Championship matches for the first time in all their 12 participations.

China hasn’t dropped a set in three straight matches – 11China put on a strong performance to beat Belgium 3-0 (25-21, 25-22, 25-19) for their third straight win at the World Championship and secure a berth in the second phase. Belgium and China had never met before at the World Championship. China opened their World Championship with three matches without losing a set for the first time since the 1990 World Championship. Zeng Chunlei was the top scorer of the match (18 points). They played each other earlier this year at the 2014 World Grand Prix. China beat Belgium 3-1 in the final round. Belgium’s Helene Rosseaux is 23 years old celebrating her birthday today. She played in Modena, an Italian club. China won all three matches of Pool D in straight sets.

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