Italy's Taismary Aguero spikes
Beijing, China, August 13, 2008 - World number two Italy took just 54 minutes to easily sweep past Algeria in straight sets (25-7, 25-20, 25-12) in a Pool B encounter of the Olympic Women's Volleyball Tournament at the BIT Gymnasium here on Wednesday.
With the win, Italy improved their win and loss record to 3-0 while dropped Algeria to 0-3. Italy are expected to earn a quarterfinal berth while Algeria are yet to win a match after three attempts, and the chances for them to enter the top eight are very slim.
The 2007 FIVB World Cup winners Italy, one of the top favourites for the gold medal, were dominant right from the first set, making clear to their opponents that they were not going to do any favors. Through the lethal spikes and blockings from Martina Guiggi and Taismary Aguero, who scored seven points in the set, they proved too strong for the 21st-ranked North Africans, winning 25-7.
Having won the first set with a big 14-point margin, the Italians were over-relaxed and lost their concentration while their opponents, on the contrary, had not loss their fighting spirit and confidence. Algeria fought bravely in the second set, and they were only two points and five points behind in the first and second technical timeout. Though they lost the second set, they won a total of 20 points, winning huge applause from the spectators.
After the first two sets, the third one was basically a mirror image of the first set, with Italy powering to a 25-12 win on the back of wonderful spiking from Nadia Centoni and Serena Ortolani to wrap up their third victory in as many games. Aguero did not play in the third set.
Nadia Centoni was the leading scorer with 16 points, followed by Aguero with 11 points.