Volleyball News

Kaohsiung, Chinese Taipei, July 11, 2016 – Defeated by Thailand 1-3 (18-25, 13-25, 25-18, 21-25) on Sunday, hosts Chinese Taipei tasted their another 1-3 loss to Kazakhstan (23-25, 25-16, 22-25, 23-25) at Kaohsiung Arena on Day 3 of the SMM 18th Taichung Bank Asian Men’s U20 Volleyball Championship and thus, in a 1-2 record ranked third in Pool A, had to enter the second round of 9th-16th playoffs together with winless Saudi Arabia. Unbeaten Thailand and Kazakhstan, having a record 2-1 record, will qualify to the second round of top eight playoffs.

In Pool B, Iran beat Hong Kong, China 3-0 (25-13, 25-17, 25-15) and Turkmenistan saw off Qatar 3-0 (25-23, 25- 23, 25-23) on Monday, so undefeated Iran and Turkmenistan (2-1) secured two berths in top eight. Winless Qatar and Hong Kong, China will fight against each other for their first win on the scheduled rest day Tuesday due to Qatar’s late arrival affected by Typhoon.

Pool C witnessed powerhouse China’s successive straight set wins against Iraq, Pakistan and Japan. Iraq knocked Pakistan out Monday 3-1 (25-21, 21-25, 25-14, 25-18) but already kissed goodbye to top eight even if Japan happen to lose to Pakistan 0-3 in a postponed match on Tuesday.

In Pool D, Sri Lanka were swept by six-title defender Korea (25-20, 25-20, 25-20) but are still alive in striving for a better place in last eight with a 2-1 record. Australia took their first victory against Bahrain 3-0 (26-24, 25-17, 25-21) and both have to fight for the best ranking of 9 in the following rounds.

Thailand and Kazakhstan from Pool A together with China and possible Japan from Pool C will go to Pool E while Iran and Turkmenistan from Pool B will join Korea and Sri Lanka in Pool F for another round of robin system except those met in the first round. The quarter-finals will take place according to teams’ ranking in Pool E and F. Winners of the quarter-finals will enter semi-finals while losing teams strive for the 5th -8th places. Top two teams of the championship will represent AVC at the next year’s FIVB Men’s U21 Volleyball Championship. 

Iran b Hong Kong China 3-0

It took full-armed Iran only 65 minutes to conquer Hong Kong, China in 3-0 (25-13, 25-17, 25-15). Hong Kong strengthened their spikes and defense in the second set, but they still had to yield to the mighty Iranians unfortunately. The best scorer of Iran player is No.12 Esfandiar Amirhossein, who bagged 11 points, and his teammate No.17 Rasooli Mahmood also contributed 10. 

Turkmenistan b Qatar 3-0

In three close set wins (25-23, 25-23, 25-23), Turkmenistan saw off Qatar to secure their second wins at the Asian Men’s U20 Volleyball Championship, following their 3-1 (20-25, 25-18, 25-19, 25-23) victory against Hong Kong, China Sunday

In the first set, both teams showed ambition and great enthusiasm. Players encouraged each other and highly focused on this decisive game. The best scorer of Turkmenistan first launched the attack actively, leading the team to 8-6 before the first technical timeout. Yet, errors in defense left Qatar opportunities to catch up with Turkmenistan. Faisal, No. 12 of Qatar spiked successfully and both moved to 13-13 tie. Encountering the powerful attacks of Qatar, Turkmenistan could not block in the crucial moments, which made them lose several points. However, they were good enough to seize the crucial points and finally won the first set with 25-23.

In the second set, Turkmenistan made at least five serve errors, which lowered the morale of the team. As the best scorer of this game, Sokolar, No. 1 from Qatar grasped the opportunity to attack and created disorder for Turkmenistan, leading the team to 22-20. However, their awful defense destroyed themselves and the set was ended in at the same 25-23 at the favor of Turkmenistan.

Although Turkmenistan were even poorer in blocking (5-11), they made fewer errors than Qatar (25-31). At the very last moment, Halmuhammedov, No. 7 of Turkmenistan scored the key point, spurring his teammate to the final set win in 25-23 and closing the door for Qatar.

Thailand b Saudi Arabia 3-0

After one and a half hour competition, this tense match ended with 3:0 (38-36, 25-16, 25-19). Thailand remain unbeaten while Saudi Arabia yet to taste first win.

The first set witnessed deuce again and again. Both teams kept their power and eagerness to win this match. The deuce went until 36:36 before Thailand managed to finish the set in a remarkable 38-36. Thailand continued their momentum in the next two sets while Saudi Arabia were more affected by the pitiful loss of the first set. In 25-16 and 25-19, Thailand easily took their third victory.

No. 10 Aedh of Saudi Arabia scored the top 15 points but in vain, while Thailand were fully on fire with 13 points by No. 8 captain Pusit, 12 points by No. 16 Kantapat and 11 points by No. 15 Kitipong.

Kazakhstan b Chinese Taipei 3-1

Survived from the five-set thriller against Saudi Arabia Sunday, Kazakhstan played in a more relaxed way against the host Chinese Taipei, while the latter still seemed to be overwhelmed by Sunday’s loss to Thailand. Big pressure resulted in up to 30 errors especially at the key moments despite young guys of Chinese Taipei fought hard enough and once came so close to reverse the situation. In 1-3 (23-25, 25-16, 22-25, 23-25), Chinese Taipei had to accept the failure and the fact being out of top 8.

Australia b Bahrain 3-0

Both teams had strong desire to grab their first triumph on Monday but after Australia took the first set in a narrow margin 26-24, the balance was tipped in Australia’s favor. Bahrain made many error in reception and helped Australia serve remarkable 9 aces.  Aussies took the second set 25-17. Despite the counterattacks by Bahrain again and again in the third set, Australia firmly controlled the situation through their brilliant team play and stamped the set in 25-21. 

Korea b Sri Lanka 3-0

Six-time champions Korea proved their superiority to top Pool D after a straight set win (25-20, 25-20, 25-20) against the dark horse Sri Lanka, which have locked a place in top 8 with two wins in hand.

Both teams started off with violent plays, refusing to compromise any points. Korea sped up in the end and took over the first set in 25-20.

Sri Lanka enhanced their attacks from both wings however they could not restrict Korea’s offense. The increasing errors of Sri Lanka let Korea gain more scores and win the set with the same margin 25-20.

Korea remained in good condition to lead the scores in the third set. After the second technical timeout, Sri Lanka played some tips instead of spiking all the time. Nonetheless, they could not reverse the situation and surrendered the set in 20-25.

China b Japan 3-0

China and Japan, two of the predicted top four teams, had the chance to go head to head early in Pool C and eventually, China beat Japan in straight sets (25-20, 26-24, 25-22).

China started the match in a mighty way, putting overwhelming stress on Japan. Japan almost had no chance to surpass and gave up the set in 20-25. But their furious attacks, led by No. 18 Takanashi, came into full force in the second set. China could not find a good solution but answered with the same weapon. When the score came to a 24-24 tie, Japan called a timeout but China were better at scoring the crucial points. The set was finished in 24-26 in China’s favor.

Japan had an unstable beginning in the third set, however, they caught up the scores immediately and kept at the same pace with China. China made some substitutions to frustrate the opponents and penetrating spikes from the right wing helped them prevail Japan at the end of the third set 25-22.

No. 3 Yu Yuantai led China with 21 points, while No. 18 Takanashi of Japan also grasped an impressive 18 points.

Iraq b Pakistan 3-1

Pakistan tasted their second loss as they were beaten by Iraq 1-3 (21-25, 25-21, 14-25, 18-25), but they still have little chance to qualify if they can defeat Japan (1-1) at the rescheduled match on Tuesday