Montreux, Switzerland, June 1, 2016 – World Cup winners China, fielding many substitutes, failed to make their mark before going down to reigning champions Turkey in dramatic four sets 21-25 25-15 19-25 15-25 at the Montreux Volley Masters on Wednesday.
Turkey lost to Belgium in their opening match the previous day and tried to come up with improved performance, while China bagged their first win over Brazil’s world U23 champions on Tuesday.
The first set started off with a point to Turkey knowing that they had a daunting task agains The Great Wall of China. China tried to dominate the first part of the set but Turkey were stubborn and kept a close-eye of their opponents not allowing a gap. The score was tied at 8-8. The set continued with great rallies as the crowd enjoyed and cheered on. Turkey made a full recovery towards mid set with excellent spike points to surge ahead the tough opponents 17-13. Both teams portrayed similar strength but not dominating enough to take full lead as the score remained 20-20. Turkey put on good show with Polen, Hande and Kubra’s spikes and blocks at the end of the set, which resulted in a shock loss of China. Turkey won 25-21.
The second set started off with a confident China eager to win the set. Turkey’s young Hande Baladin’s attacks and defence wasn’t enough as China dominated from mid set onwards. China blocks proved too hard for Turkey to handle on second set which resulted in China winning 25-15.
The beginning of the third set saw both sides attempt to dominate the game with long rallies. The score was 5-5. The ambience of the game was great as the crowd hosted both fans from China and Turkey causing loud cheering. Towards mid set, China took their second timeout early as Turkey took lead with excellent attacks from Hande Baladin and Polen Uslupehlivan. Turkey won the set 25-19 when China’s Wang Yunlu served out.
Both teams showed an outstanding performance in the fourth set, the overall flow of the game was exceptional. The crowd enjoyed the fast paced quality of the game and experienced relentless rallies and action. Turkey dominated the set but performed outstanding action as the volleyball fans enjoyed the overall show. Fatma Yildirim’s final spike won Turkey a match point including their first win against rivals China. Young Hande Baladin from Turkey and Gong Xiangyu became the top scorers both contributed 20 points for their teams.