China beats Japan at women's volleyball world cup
Updated: 2011-11-07 09:48
Chinese volleyball players Zhang Lei (17), Hui Ruoqi (4) and Wei Qiuyue react during the match against hosts Japan in Hiroshima, Nov 6, 2011. [Photo/CFP]
The Japanese team gained the upper hand in the first set with their effective defense, but the Chinese soon adapted to their combination and rallied to win the second set. In the following set, the Chinese found it hard to score in the face of a quicker reaction in attack from their opposites and lost it.
The last two sets saw a stronger Chinese team in both defense and attack. They came from behind to defeat the Japanese team by narrow margins at key moments. The 2003 winners China beat the hosts 3-2 (20-25, 25-19, 20-25, 25-23, 15-13).
Hui Ruoqi led the team with 23 points, followed by Wang Yimei with 18. For Japan, Saori Kimura scored most in the match with 24 points.
Chinese head coach Yu Juemin said the match was far more tougher than he had expected. "The defense and attack on the Japanese side are really of high quality," he said.
Hui said her team had won the match with the spirit of teamwork and never giving up.
The World Cup this year marks the first step in the qualification process for the London Olympic Games next year. The tournament will run from November 4 to 18. A total of 12 teams take part in the contest, but only the top three teams will qualify for the Olympics.
Wang Yimei reacts during the match against hosts Japan in Hiroshima, Nov 6, 2011. [Photo/CFP]