Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, September 5, 2023 – Devastating China powered their way into the highly-anticipated final showdown of the 22nd Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship following their lopsided 3-0 (25-13, 25-12, 25-22) win against AVC Challenge Cup winners Vietnam at Chartchai Hall here on Tuesday.
China, fielding most players who joined the team which captured gold medal at the last month Chengdu Universiade including powerful hitter Wu Mengjie, Zhong Hui and Zhou Yetong, made a solid start in the first set, with Zhou and Zhong on fire in attack to lead the team with a six-point clear at 11-5 and continued their onslaughts to extend it to 22-12. Vietnam tried to hit back, but the Chinese defence was impenetrable, allowing them scoring opportunities. China clinched a totally one-sided win 25-13.
The situation in the second set remained unchanged with the Chinese leading the way. China mixed the excellent combinations of spectacular attacks from Wu and Zhong and solid blocking by Liu Yu and Xu to race to an initial 16-5 lead. Vietnam put their acts together, hoping to make amends in the first set loss. Still, their determination did not work out as China showcased their highly-productive performance in this lopsided set and went on their aggressive attacks to advance 23-12. To make short work of Vietnam, China allowed the opponents a few more points to finish it off 25-12.
The third set was more thrilling when Vietnam maintained their poise and counter-attacked well at the beginning to briefly lead 8-6, thanks to their true team spirit and firm determination. However, the Chinese proved their superiority as they came back much strong to level it at 10-10 and went on their exceptional form to surge away 22-20. The Vietnamese did not want to surrender easily as they fought back to come within a whisker of catching them at 23-all. However, the Chinese had enough to hold them off 24-22 after the 196cm-tall Yang Hanyu produced a fast spike to the empty mid-court space. Vietnam kept on fighting, but China held firm for the eventual set win 25-22, match and a final berth.
Middle blocker Yang Hanyu chipped in with 14 points from 5 attacks, team-leading 7 blocks and 2 aces for China, while outside hitter Wu Mengjie and middle blocker Liu Yu added another 12 and 11 points respectively. The China’s dominance was also visible in the match stats as the winners dominated in kills (41 to 25), blocks (12 to 4) and aces (5 to 1), but similarly benefiting from opponent errors (17 to 17). Tran Thi Bich Thuy scored 8 points in the Vietnam’s loss.
With their convincing win in the semifinals, China now await the winners in another semifinal clash between hosts Thailand and Japan to set up the Wednesday’s showdown.
“It’s the semifinals and my players prepared well for this match. They played pretty well today. We will next play either Thailand or Japan in the final. We must have the confidence to be ourselves and try to do our best to win the game,” China head coach Zhao Yong said after the match.
AVC Website: click www.asianvolleyball.net
AVC Facebook: click www.Facebook.com/AsianVolleyballConfederation
AVC Twitter: click: www.twitter.com/AsianVolleyball
AVC Instagram: click: https://www.instagram.com/avcvolley/?hl=en
AVC Youtube: click: Asian Volleyball Confederation
AVC WeChat: Asian Volleyball Confederation