Ha Nam, Vietnam, September 15, 2015 – China League champions Zhejiang powered past 4.25 Sports Club to remain undefeated in the 2015 Asian Women’s Club Volleyball Championship at the Ha Nam Gymnasium on Tuesday, as title-holders Hisamitsu thrashed Petron Blaze Spikers and Zhetyssu stunned Thong Tin Lienvietpost Bank for first victory in the top-flight competition.
In Pool B, Zhejiang, which have already beaten Iran’s Islamic Azad University and reigning champions Hisamitsu Seiyaku Springs, made it three in a row on Tuesday following their scintillating 25-15 25-18 25-22 victory over DPR Korea’s 4.25 Sports Club, while Hisamitsu Seiyaku Springs from Japan methodically tore Petron Blaze Spikers’ defence into shreds to mercilessly crush the Philippine team in a totally lop-sided battle 25-5 25-16 25-12.
The Pool A encounter saw the strongly-built Zhetyssu from Kazakhstan complete their pool round-robin preliminary campaign with their dramatic 25-17 19-25 25-22 25-21 victory over hosts Thong Tin Lienvietpost Bank.
Against 4.25 Sports Club, indomitable Zhejiang fielded the similar line-up which beat the Japanese counterparts including spiking machine Li Jing, Wang Na, Qiu Yanan, Wang Huimin and Yang Zhou, while the Koreans were competing without their key player, the injured Jong Jin Sim.
The Chinese team got off to a brilliant start to capture the first two sets 25-15 and 25-18, but the Koreans struck back in the third set, in which they led from the beginning. Li Jing and Wang Huimin were the Zhejiang’s successful comeback as they took turns puncturing the Korean defence with their spectacular spikes. Despite putting up a fierce fight, 4.25 Sports Club found the Chinese a tough nut to crack as they went down 22-25 in the set for the eventual straight-set letdown.
Li Jing remained the top scorer of Zhejiang with 20 points comprising 17 kills from 39 attempts and three stuff blocks.Ju Un Hyang amassed 16 points for 4.25 Sports Club.
“We did not play well against the Koreans. The way that my substituted players competed was far from my expectation. In the third set, they made too many mistakes and could not catch up with the Koreans until the mid way. Fortunately, we won the set. We next take on the Philippines’ Petron Blaze Spikers. I’m quite confident that we can beat them without much trouble,” Zhejiang’s head coach Wu Sheng commented after the match.
In the match between defending champions Hisamitsu Seiyaku Springs and Petron Blaze Spikers, the former proved a cut above the unfancied challengers as the Japanese showed no mercy to the latter with a scintillating straight-set win in a totally lop-sided battle.
Tatjana Bokan led Hisamitsu Seiyaku Springs with 16 points including 13 kills from 34 attempts. She also led in the blocking skill with three points. Aleona Manabat-Santiago collected seven points for Petron Blaze Spikers, all from her attack hits.
“We played our game, attempting not to come up with mistakes. After winning the first set easily, I rested my best players and gave chances to all substitutions. They also played well. I don’t think we will have any problem taking on Iran’s Islamic Azad University in our last preliminary match on Wednesday,” Koto Yoichi, head coach of Hisamitsu Seiyaku Springs commented after the match.
Earlier, Zhetyssu from Kazakhstan brushed off hosts Thong Tin Lienvietpost Bank in dramatic four sets amidst a large number of Vietnamese supporters inside the competition venue.
Tatyana Mudritskaya scored a match-high 23 points for Zhetyssu including 16 kills from 40 attempts, while Bui Thi Nga collected 17 points for Thong Tin Lienvietpost Bank.
“It’s hard game for us as we lost two matches before. We tried to find our quality such as reception, attack and we fought for every ball. That’s why we can win. Thong Tin Lienvietpost Bank also played well. They tried very hard. Now, it’s likely that we will finish third in Pool A and we next have to go up against defending champions Hisamitsu. It must be a very tough match out there, but we will do our best. No matter tough it will be, we will fight all out,” Zhetyssu’s libero Marina Storozhenko commented after the match.
The host side already lost twice and had their last chance in their pool plays against Thailand’s Bangkok Glass on Wednesday. A possible loss to the Thais means Thong Tin Lienvietpost Bank will be the only team in the pool to win no match and will finish fourth in Pool A, resulting in their next clash against the Pool B winners, likely to be Zhejiang, in the quarter-finals to determine the top four in the semi-finals.
The pool round-robin preliminaries continue through Wednesday, with Iran’s Islamic Azad University taking on Hisamitsu Springs, Petron Blaze Spikers challenging Zhejiang and Bangkok Glass pitted against Thong Tin Lienvietpost Bank. Thursday will be the rest day. The competition resumes on Friday in the cross quarter-finals.
TUESDAY’S PRELIMINARY RESULTS
Zhetyssu (Kazakhstan) b Thong Tin Lienvietpost Bank (Vietnam) 3-1 (25-17 19-25 25-22 25-21)
Zhejiang (China) b 4.25 Sports Club (DPR Korea) 3-0 (25-15 25-18 25-22)
Hisamitsu Seiyaku Springs (Japan) b Petron Blaze Spikers (Philippines) 3-0 (25-5 25-16 25-12)
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2015
4pm: Islamic Azad University (Iran) v Hisamitsu Seiyaku Springs (Japan)
6pm: Petron Blaze Spikers (Philippines) v Zhejiang (China)
8pm: Bangkok Glass (Thailand) v Thong Tin Lienvietpost Bank (Vietnam)