Surabaya, Indonesia, July 29, 2017 – Korea stretched their invincibility to five matches in a row following their dramatic 3-1 (25-18 23-25 25-23 25-13) victory over Kazakhstan in their second top-eight playoff match at the SMM 19th Asian Senior Men’s Volleyball Championship at the Tri Dharma Petrokimia Gymnasium on Saturday.
Korea rested Moon Sungmin, one of their key players, in the very beginning of the first set and replaced him with Lee Kangwon. Korea had a little problems in overcoming Kazakhstan for the first-set win 25-18, but Kazakhstan fought back to take the second set 25-23, thanks largely to the fierce attacks from Maxim Michshenko and Vitaliy Varavodin.
Both sides performed superbly in the third set, with Korea marching on their excellent teamwork and consistent play and the Kazakhs on their combination attacks. Korea snatched a closely-contested set 25-23.
Holding a 2-1 advantage, Korea turned the heat on Kazakhstan in the fourth set, which turned out to be a completely one-sided affair. The scores ended 25-13 in favour of the Koreans.
“We did our best to win this match. After winning the first set, we did not expect to lose the second set. We just worried about it and then lost it. In our next match against China in the quarter-finals, I admit that it will be a little bit tough game. Since China are very good at blocking and they are also very fast, so we are expecting an exciting match agains them. Today, we made a lot of changes in player rotation. It was just because we want to use many players in our next match,” Korea’s head coach Kim Hochul commented after the match.
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