Jakarta, Indonesia, February 15, 2018 – Indonesia B pulled off an incredible comeback 3-2 victory over Indonesia A in the final showdown to stamp their authority over the 18th Asian Games Men’s Volleyball Invitation Tournament at the Tennis Indoor Senayan in Jakarta on Thursday.
Indonesia A, which comprised 10 national players who joined the fourth-place Indonesia side at the last year’s 18th Asian Senior Men’s Volleyball Championship on home soil in Gresik, had been regarded earlier as the hot favourite for the title as they continued the unbeaten run en route to advancing to the final clash.
Spearheaded by hard-attacking Rivan Nurmulki, Agung Seganti and Doni Haryono, Indonesia A outclassed Indonesia B 3-0 in their opening clash on February 11. They later brushed off Hong Kong 3-0 in their second encounter before a hard-fought 3-2 win against Japan in their last round-robin preliminary match. Indonesia A repeatedly beat Hong Kong 3-1 in the semi-finals on Wednesday.
Indonesia B, however, recovered well. After a disappointing straight-set loss to compatriots Indonesia A on the opening match, they regained the lost pride by narrowly beating Japan 3-2 and overwhelming Hong Kong 3-0 before powering past old foes Japan 3-1 in the semi-finals.
Against the team they lost in straight sets on the opening day, Indonesia B fielded a strong line-up including Sigit Ardian, Putra Eko Permana and Dhani Anggriawan to deal with the Indonesia A’s good teamwork and impenetrable defence.
Going down the first two sets 21-25 18-25, Indonesia B regrouped to prove that there is life after death in any competition. They attacked heavily, boosted and served well to win the remaining three sets 25-21 25-18 15-11, surprising everyone in the competition venue.
Sigit Ardian led Indonesia B with 26 points from 23 attacks, 1 block and 2 ace serves. Dhani Anggriawan contributed 15 points including 3 blocks and 4 well-placed serves. Rivan scored a match-high 20 points for Indonesia A including 18 kills. Agung Seganti added 17 points, all from attack hits.
In the third place playoff earlier, Japan had a little problems in thrashing underdogs Hong Kong in the completely one-sided battle 25-10 25-14 25-9. Hiroki Ozawa led Japan with 12 points, while Hin So Chun was the Hong Kong’s best scorer with 6 points.
Third-place playoff: Japan b Hong Kong 3-0 (25-10 25-14 25-9)
Final: Indonesia B b Indonesia A 3-2 (21-25 18-25 25-21 25-18 15-11)
1. Indonesia B
2. Indonesia A
4. Hong Kong
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