Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, April 4, 2017 – Chinese Taipei pulled off a dramatic 3-1 (25-19 25-15 19-5 25-21) win over Australia in the 5th-8th playoff match at the SMM 11th Asian Boys’ U19 Volleyball Championship at the Wunna Theikdi Indoor Stadium Hall B on Tuesday.
Chinese Taipei mixed the excellent offensive combination of spectacular spikes from Huang Shih-Chan and Chang Yu-Sheng and the 198cm-Kan Ming-Hsiu’s good blocks to take the opening set 25-19.
Australia put their acts together in the second set, hoping to make amends for the first-set loss, but Chinese Taipei came up with quick attacks and solid defence, allowing the Australians tough times scoring. Chinese Taipei won the second set 25-15.
Australia’s more determination in the third set bore fruits well when they raced to a 5-1 lead and stretched it to 12-9, thanks to the scintillating blocks by the 207cm-tall Thomas Heptintall and Ryan Dagg. Australia went on their attacks and effective blocks to win the set 25-19.
In the fourth set, both sides came all-out, but Chinese Taipei fared much better to take a commanding 19-15 lead. Australia heightened their defence and hit back to reduce the gap 21-22. Nevertheless, Chinese Taipei held on to win the crucial set 25-21 and match.
Huang Shih-Chan topscored with 17 points for Chinese Taipei, while Chang Yu-Sheng added three ace serves. Thomas Heptinstall led Australia with 15 points including 11 kills from 41 attempts. He also had 3 ace serves, while Jayden Fathers and Ryan Dagg added 3 points apiece from kill blocks.
“I’m glad that my players won the match, but truly speaking, they played according to their training. I think Australia were not at their best today. They played much better in the match against China. We trained only one month in preparation for this tournament. Against Thailand on Wednesday, we will analyze their team’s performance and we will do our best in that match,” Chinese Taipei’s head coach Chuang Shih-Hsien commented after the match.
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