Ljubljana, Slovenia, September 12, 2017 – Host Slovenia continued their magnificent performance to cruise past China in straight sets (15-11, 15-12, 15-5, 15-8) in a match that kept the spectators on their toes for only 54 minutes in Pool A of the 2017 FIVB Women’s U23 World Championship in Ljubljana’s Arena Stozice on Tuesday evening.
Slovenia remain unbeaten while China have dropped to a 2-1 win-loss record.
All matches in Ljubljana are played under a new scoring system currently being tested: a best-of-seven, 15-point set format.
Slovenia’s Iza Mlakar led the match scorers with eleven points, while Yunlu Wang contributed eight points for the loser side.
Iza Mlakar and Saša Planinšec had a scoring showdown, leading their sides to a well-deserved first set encounter. The Asians did their best to resist but experienced huge difficulties with the sharp Slovenian serves. The hosts continued their winning streak in the following sets, offering China no room for improvement. Mlakar ended the party with a blistering winner from the right side to secure Slovenia their third consecutive win her in Ljubljana.
Slovenia coach Alessandro Chiappini: “I think today we might have delivered the best performance so far since I have taken over this team. We pushed strong with service and played good in defense. Although China is an extremely strong team, with our performance we did not allow them to shine. Now, we first need to rest our minds as playing three consecutive matches was quite difficult.”
Slovenia’s Sasa Planinsec: “We felt great energy on the court today. We tried to make the most out of every ball. So far, it worked out very well for us. We managed to follow our gameplan from A to Z. We feel very happy right now.”
China coach Wu Sheng: “First I would like to congratulate the Slovenians for their win. Slovenia served well today and we committed many mistakes from the serving line. I think this was what made the difference.”
China captain Cheng Long: “We didn’t play well today, we made too many mistakes on serve and in defence. We also were not blocking as we should. The Slovenian team was just playing better. I hope we will improve in our next matches.”
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