Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, August 4, 2013 – Egypt overpowered hosts Thailand in a gruelling five set match (20-25, 25-21, 25-20, 18-25, 15-8) to finish in 15th place at the Girls’ U18 World Championship held at the Liptapanlop Hall on Sunday.
Following their loss, Thailand came in a disappointing 16th place at this World Championship - a far cry from when they outclassed the less-experienced Egypt in the 13th-14th place playoff in Turkey two years’ ago.
Egypt’s Malak Badawy scored a match-high of 20 points, while the majority of Thailand’s points came from Jiraporn Chaymon, who collected 26 points including 22 kills from 79 attempts.
Thailand started well, with powerful Jiraporn Chaymon uncorking a series of hard attacks. Egypt upped their tempo to challenge the host side seriously, which saw Malak Badawy put in her great form to penetrate the Thai defence with her aggressive spikes. After a thrilling rally, Thailand snatched the first set 25-20.
Losing the opener, the brave visitors never gave up easily. They regrouped and played consistently. The 183cm Aya Ahmed used her height advantage to attack impressively at the net, while Heidi Kandiel and Malak Badawy combined well for good blockings.
Their determination paid off impressively when Egypt won the next two sets 25-21, 25-20. Thailand, noisily cheered on by drum-beating, horn-blowing section of home supporters, fought back to win the fourth set 25-18.
Egypt, playing cool under pressure, turned the tables on Thailand in the tie-breaker, which they led initially with a score of 12-7. From then on, the Egyptians poured everything they had to win this match, while the Thai girls played more wearily. They lost concentration and form. Egypt allowed the hosts only one more point to win the decider 15-8 and the match.
2013 Girls’ U18 World Championship
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