Margareta Kozuch (left) of Germany and Kazakhstan's Olga Drobyshevskaya face off at the net in Matsumoto.
Matsumoto, Japan, October 29, 2010 – Germany got off to a smooth start at the FIVB Women's World Championship on Friday with a comfortable 3-0 (25-21, 25-14, 25-16) victory over Kazakhstan. Margareta Kozuch was the top scorer for Germany with 14 points, while Maren Brinker and Christiane Furst added 13 and 11 respectively. Olga Drobyshevskaya came up with 11 and Olessya Arslanova charted 10 for Kazakhstan.
FIVB Women's World Championship Japan 2010 official page
The opening phase of the match at the Matsumoto City Gymnasium was even as both teams failed to sparkle. Kazakhstan took an early two-point lead, but the Germans reversed that at 10-8. The eastern Europeans went ahead again at 12-10 after two German errors and a block by Drobyshevskaya on Germany's Corina Ssuschke, but Giovani Guidetti's team then started to find some form, taking the next six points to lead 16-12 at the Second Technical Timeout (STT). Kazakhstan responded to draw level at 19-19 thanks to a spike by Arslanova following a receiving error but the Germans' strength told with Brinker sending down two spikes and blocking Yuliya Kutsko to wrap up the set.
Despite a great block by Olga Nassedkina on Brinker, Kazakhstan remained on the back foot in the opening phase of the second set and coach Nelli Chsherbakova called a timeout with her side 6-2 down. Nassedkina responded with a good spike from a short set, but the Germans were in the driving seat at the First Technical Timeout (FTT), leading 8-4. Germany then went on a five-point surge behind the serving of Furst, and with a powerful slam by Kozuch and a Kazakh receiving error they were fully 10 points ahead at the STT. With Chsherbakova's team struggling to land their spikes in court and Germany's defence looking strong, the contest was becoming lopsided. Although Drobyshevskaya came up with two great blocks and a tipover for Kazakhstan, successive errors by Sana Jarlagassova and Irina Zaitseva secured the set for Germany with an 11-point margin.
Kazakhstan kept things close early in the third set and they were within two points of Germany at the FTT. A thumping spike by Kozuch and a service ace from Kathleen Weiss forced Chsherbakova to call a timeout with her team 12-8 behind but it proved to no avail with the big-hitting Kozuch starting to find holes in the Kazakh defence and their attack unable to string enough points together. A wide spike by Lyudmila Anarbayeva handed the Germans match point and another wayward shot by Drobyshevskaya ended the contest.