Ljubljana, Slovenia, September 11, 2017 – China remain undefeated after the second day of play at the 2017 FIVB Women’s U23 World Championship here on Monday, but they had to fight from 1-2 down to beat Egypt 4-2 (10-15, 15-11, 12-15, 15-10, 15-7, 15-7) in an hour and 33 minutes at Arena Stozice.
For a second day Egypt produced a sensational performance and showed great fighting spirit but eventually ran out of steam as the physical superiority of China prevailed.
All matches in Ljubljana are played under a new scoring system currently being tested: a best-of-seven, 15-point set format.
Setter Doaa Abdelghany was stretchered off as Egypt led 14-10 in the first. She was substituted by Mariam Ebrahim but immediately after the interruption Aya Ahmed stepped up to serve an ace and give the African side the lead.
After the collapse of Egypt in the fourth, China picked up and dominated play on the net, but the Asian side still committed as many as 16 unforced errors (to Egypt’s 14).
Yunlu Wang led China with 16 points and Ye Jin, who came on off the bench in the second, added another 15. Kailin Yu rounded off the scoring for China with 14. But again it was Egypt’s Aya Elshamy with 22 points who was top scorer of the game (although she too had to be benched in the sixth due to injury), while Aya Ahmed served a tournament-high of 5 aces.
China coach, Wu Sheng: “Today our players didn’t focus on the match from the start. They got into the game very slowly and Egypt played quite well today. It’s not normal for us to be that slow. We didn’t progress the way we wanted to.”
China outside hitter Wang Yunlu: “We weren’t focused like yesterday. They put great pressure on us so we didn’t block them very well, but through the match we got more focused and played as a team. I think it will get even more difficult in the next days so we need to focus on every match from the very beginning.”
Egypt coach, Maged Mohamed: “It was evident we had problems because of the injury of our setter and also our best attacker Aya. We have a young, inexperienced team, which makes a lot of mistakes. Let’s hope tomorrow we will do better.”
Egypt captain, Farida El Askalany: “These [Dominican Republic yesterday and China today] were probably the two most difficult matches in the competition. I think we did good. We were so close but I think we should aim for more in the next matches. We want to win all of them.”
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