THAILAND FLEX MUSCLES IN LOPSIDED WIN AGAINST PHILIPPINES IN “PRINCESS CUP” WOMEN’S U18 SOUTHEAST ASIAN CHAMPIONSHIP

THAILAND FLEX MUSCLES IN LOPSIDED WIN AGAINST PHILIPPINES IN “PRINCESS CUP” WOMEN’S U18 SOUTHEAST ASIAN CHAMPIONSHIP

Nakhon Pathom, Thailand, June 10, 2024 – In-form Thailand cemented their place at the top of six-team standings as the host side handed Philippines the first loss in the 22nd “Princess Cup” Women’s U18 Southeast Asian Volleyball Championship at the Nakhon Pathom Gymnasium here on Monday.

Ahead of their clash with each other, Thailand and Philippines each captured two consecutive wins in their comfortable outings, with the former outplaying Indonesia 3-0 and Australia 3-0 and the latter demolishing Singapore 3-0 and Malaysia 3-1. The Monday’s win helped the team maintain remarkable unbeaten run and make them the strongest contenders to be reckoned with in this single round-robin competition.

Thailand fielded a formidable team with height average at 176cm against the Philippines’ 170cm. As a result, the Philippine girls were just overpowered by the taller and more experienced hosts.

Philippines’ inexperience was witnessed in the first set as the host side pounded them with powerful attacks from the 185cm-tall outside hitter Supawadee Phanwilai and fellow outside hitter Atitaya Kaewnok. Both teams started strongly to exchange points in the early part of the first set 7-7 before Supawadee and Atitaya anchored the host nation to seven unanswered points to break it wide open before extending it to 20-11, en route to an opening 25-15 victory.

The next two sets turned out to be completely one-way traffic. As Thailand were incredibly dominant with impressive combination attacks, consistency and resilience, Philippines suffered from unforced attacking errors and poor receptions which finally allowed the host team to win 25-12 in the second set.

Despite a determined challenge in the third set, the Philippines found Thailand too hot to handle. With opposite Sasikan Kanoiu providing backups, Thailand piled up an 18-7 lead and stormed on to capture the easy set 25-11 and the lopsided match.

Supawadee Phanwilai scored a match-high 18 points from 13 attacks, 2 blocks and 3 aces for Thailand, while Sasikan Kanoiu and Atitaya Keawnok contributed 14 and 9 points respectively. Kimberly Chelmei Rubin led Philippines with 11 points.

The Thailand’s dominance was also visible in the match stats as the winners dominated in all elements comprising in kills (41 to 18), blocks (6 to 3) and aces (8 to 1), besides benefiting from more opponent errors (20 to 16). 

Thailand remained on top of the standings with a perfect 3-0 win-loss record and the only unbeaten team in the six-day tournament, while Philippines dropped to 2-1.

Earlier, Malaysia, which succumbed to two straight losses to Australia and Philippines, tasted their first victory in the tournament on Monday as they managed to a 3-0 shutout of Singapore.

Middle blocker Tian Ye Eunice, Jia Hui Denise and Ee Ling played leading roles in the Malaysia’s fight for their crucial win, unleashing a barrage of fast spikes and solid blocks for winning the first two sets 25-14, 25-16.

Singapore, led by outside hitter Tan Zi Yu Katie, bounced back for a comeback in the third set, but their determination did not pay its dividends. Malaysia did a better job to take the set 25-19 and match.

Tian Ye Eunice chipped in with 19 points from 14 attacks, team-leading 3 blocks and 2 aces for Malaysia, while Tan Zi Yu Katie scored 13 points including 9 attacks from 27 attempts on the Singapore’s loss.

The match between Indonesia and Australia saw the former, which suffered their first loss in their campaign opener against hosts Thailand, claim two wins in succession on Monday.

 

Indonesia, fresh from beating Singapore in comfortable straight sets on Sunday, relied mostly on powerful attacks from outside hitter Junaida Santi, opposite Azzahra Dwi Febyane and fast spikes from middle blocker Chelsa Berliana Nurtomo to take the first two sets 25-17, 25-19.

Australia, which had shuffled their lineup for several times to allow their players to gain experience and composure, fought back hard in the third set but found the well-established Indonesians too strong to go down tamely 15-25.

Indonesia had four players who scored double digits in this match. Chelsa Berliana Nurtomo and Azzahra Dwi Febyane delivered 12 points apiece, while Poppy Aulia Nursutan and Junaida Santi added 11 and 10 points respectively. The 196cm-tall Anni Tang led Australia with 8 points including team-leading 6 blocks.

On Tuesday, the penultimate day of the single round-robin competition, Indonesia take on Malaysia, while Australia go up against Philippines and Thailand play Singapore.

After the preliminaries, top two teams will set up final clash on Thursday, while the third- and fourth-placed finishers  will compete for bronze and the bottom two teams will battle it out for fifth place.

RESULTS AND POOL RANKING

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