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 Press Release
China and Cuba beaten on exciting opening day

Turkey recorded one of the first upsets of the tournament, beating China in Osaka on the opening day of the 2010 FIVB Women's World Championship
Tokyo, Japan, October 29, 2010 – Two-time champions and world No.3 China suffered a surprise 3-1 (19-25, 25-14, 25-20, 25-17) defeat at the hands of Turkey while Croatia, ranked 45th in the world, toppled three-time winners and world No.6 Cuba, breaking an FIVB Women's World Championship record in the process for the highest-ever set score as they prevailed 3-0 (25-23, 34-32, 25-21).

Meanwhile, defending champions Russia, Olympic champions Brazil and USA, the 2010 FIVB World Grand Prix champions, all recorded healthy victories on the opening day of the first round of the FIVB Women's World Championship Japan 2010, which started on Friday in the cities of Tokyo, Hamamatsu, Matsumoto and Osaka. World No.7 Russia defeated the Dominican Republic, ranked 11th in the world, 3-1 (21-25, 25-9, 25-17, 25-11) while world No.1 Brazil beat world No.35 Kenya 3-0 (25-15, 25-16, 25-11) and USA, ranked second in the world, beat world No.12 Thailand 3-1 (23-25, 25-17, 25-17, 25-21).

In the day's other matches, hosts Japan recorded a sensational come-from-behind victory 3-2 (26-28, 21-25, 25-20, 25-23, 15-12) over Poland, Peru beat Algeria 3-0 (25-16, 25-12, 25-18), Serbia, bronze medallists four years ago, were too good for Costa Rica 3-0 (25-15, 25-18, 25-14), the Netherlands beat the Czech Republic 3-0 (26-24, 25-20, 25-14), Italy swept past Puerto Rico in straight sets (25-20, 25-11, 25-18), Germany beat Kazakhstan in straight sets (25-21, 25-14, 25-16) while Korea were too strong for Canada beating them 3-0 (25-19, 25-19, 25-14).

FIVB Women's World Championship Japan 2010 official page

The FIVB Women's World Championship involves 24 teams and will run from October 29 until November 14 encompassing five cities across the first and second rounds, semifinals and finals. The top four teams in the four first-round pools will advance to the second round before the top six teams in the each of the two pools will advance to the semifinals.

Pool A in Tokyo
Peru beat Algeria 3-0 (25-16, 25-12, 25-18)
Peru opened the 2010 FIVB Women's World Volleyball World Championship on the right foot with a convincing straight sets win in Pool A over world No.14 Algeria at Yoyogi Stadium. It was the first time that the two teams had met in international competition. Peru, ranked three places lower than Algeria at 17th in the world, made a successful start in their goal to improve on their 17th-place finish at the 2006 FIVB Women's World Championship. Peru wing spiker Jessenia Uceda claimed 15 points to top the scores while captain Leyla Chihuan, the oldest captain in the competition at 35 years and one month, collected 14. Faiza Tsabet was the only player to reach double figures for Algeria, who are competing in the FIVB Women's World Championship for the first time, with 11 points. “We are happy to win this game but we congratulate Algeria who were a good team,” Chihuan said. “We will go step by step, as it’s a long way through this Championship. This is just the beginning of our participation. We are not favorites, but we will keep working.”
Serbia beat Costa Rica 3-0 (25-15, 25-18, 25-14)
Serbia, FIVB Women’s World Championship bronze medalists four years ago, kicked off their journey in the 2010 edition with a straight sets win over Costa Rica. The match represented the first match between Serbia and Costa Rica - ranked ninth and 31st in the world respectively – in an FIVB competition. Middle blocker Natasa Krsmanovic was Serbia’s main offensive weapon with 12 points while Costa Rica captain Verania Willis matched the score, which represented an incredible 25% of her team’s total tally of 47. "The first game is always a difficult game no matter who you play,” Serbia captain Jelena Nikolic said. “We had a short time to practice, and I hope we can put on a better performance against Poland. Today was good but as time goes on I think we will play better and better.”
Japan beat Poland 3-2 (26-28, 21-25, 25-20, 25-23, 15-12)
Hosts Japan electrified their hometown crowd with a marathon five-set comeback win against Pool A rivals Poland at Yoyogi Stadium on Friday recording their 13th win in 19 encounters between two of the favourites in the pool, including six in the last nine matches. The stunning victory reversed a defeat to Poland in the 2010 World Grand Prix Final Round whilst repeating their incredible five-set victory at the Beijing Olympic Games. Star player Saori Kimura led the home team with 25 hard-fought points while Kaori Inoue supported with 16 of her own. For Poland, Joanna Kaczor delivered 24 with Anna Werblinska chalking up 21. “I’m personally very sorry it turned out like this,” Poland coach Jerzy Matlak said. “The match seemed under control, we led for first two sets. We could have won in fourth when we led. But Japan was dedicated and determined, and that was the turning point for them. We made too many unneeded mistakes. So the Japanese determination plus our mistakes, that’s what led to this result.”

Pool B in Hamamatsu
Brazil beat Kenya 3-0 (25-15, 25-16, 25-11)
Heavy favourites Brazil defeated a surprisingly strong Kenya team in straight sets (25-15, 25-16, 25-11) in the opening Pool B match in the Hamamatsu Arena. The vision of the Brazil setters and precise spiking of Fabiana, Jaqueline and Joyce found gaps in the Kenya defence as the match progressed. But the Africans, who are ranked 35 places behind world No. 1 Brazil and are hoping to win at least one game in Japan, can take a lot of confidence after staying close to the mighty Brazilians in the first two sets before withering in the third. “I want to say congratulations to the Kenya team,” Brazil coach Ze Roberto said. “I thought they played a very good match, this is very important to Volleyball. My team didn’t play well in the first and second sets, but in the third we played very well. I saw an evolution in the Kenyan team, it was very good, congratulations.”

The Netherlands beat the Czech Republic 3-0 (26-24, 25-20, 25-14)
The Netherlands won a close and hard fought match over a valiant Czech Republic team in straight sets. Manon Flier’s swooping spikes from all over the court ultimately gave the Netherlands a narrow edge in a close match which could have gone the Czech’s way in two opening sets spiced with lead changes, hustle plays and long rallies. “I think the Czech Republic has a very strong lineup with great athletic ability, a lot of height and power, very good setting,” Netherland’s coach Avital Selinger said. “They’re not easy to play. They really can block well. If they serve well, which they did, we needed to play with patience. I think the first two sets we won because of the experience of most of our players. Don’t forget our setter is very young so overall I’m very satisfied with the result.”

Italy beat Puerto Rico 3-0 (25-20, 25-11, 25-18)
World champions eight years ago Italy repelled an early challenge from world No. 13 Puerto Rico to run away with an opening round straight-set victory in Hamamatsu. While underdog Puerto Rico took an early first set lead behind the blistering serving and spikes of Aurea Cruz, Italy's frontline eventually over-powered them and led the world No. 4 to easier wins in the final two sets. "It was very important for us to start this World Championship with a good game,” Italian captain Eleonora Lo Bianco said. “We had some difficulty at first, but it's normal in the first games. Now we are ready to start.”

Pool C in Matsumoto
Germany beat Kazakhstan 3-0 (25-21, 25-14, 25-16)
Germany got off to a smooth start at the FIVB Women's World Championship in the Matsumoto City Gymnasium with a comfortable 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. “I think my team started with a little bit of pressure, but that's normal,” Germany coach Giovanni Guidetti said. “As I said yesterday, for many of my players it's their first World Championship. So we wanted to win this match but weren't so free in our game. After, the team understood very well what we had to do. Tomorrow, we must attack better, but I'm very happy with the way the team blocked and defended.”

USA beat Thailand 3-1 (23-25, 25-17, 25-17, 25-21)
2010 World Grand Prix champions the United States got off to a winning start at Matsumoto City Gymnasium but they had to fight hard to come-from-behind to record their 12th win in 13 matches against Thailand. Destinee Hooker led five Americans in double digits with 28 points. Jordan Larson contributed 13 points, Logan Tom and Foluke Akinradewo each registered 12 tallies and Heather Bown added 10 including six blocks. Onuma Sittirak topped Thailand’s scoring with 18 points while Pleumjit Thinkaow and Amporn Hyapha charted 11 and 10 respectively. “Thailand is a tough team to play because they are so good defensively,” USA captain Jennifer Tamas said. “We will try to focus on our serve and pass game for the rest of this tournament. We're trying to get into a rhythm in this first series and we had some ups and downs. We must try to be better at the service line.”

Croatia beat Cuba 3-0 (25-23, 34-32, 25-21)
Croatia, ranked 45th in the world, pulled off a huge upset on the first day of the FIVB Women’s World Championship Japan 2010 when they beat an error-prone world No. 6 Cuba side in straight sets. Senna Jogunica Usic topped Croatia with 15 points including four blocks while Sanja Popovic and Maja Poljak tallied 13 apiece. Cuban Yoanna Palacios led all the scorers in the game with 18 points while Yanelis Santos added 12. The second set score beat the previous record (33-31) set in 2002 between Greece and Poland. “We're living our dream,” Croatia coach Miroslav Aksentijevic said. “We played against one of the biggest teams in the world with a lot of great players. We were outsiders for sure. Maybe Cuba didn't start off 100 percent, but we kept a high level and they couldn't come back in the match. My players are very happy.”

Pool D in Osaka
Russia defeated the Dominican Republic 3-1 (21-25, 25-9, 25-17, 25-11)
Defending champions Russia indicated their intent to keep hold of their crown with a four-set victory over the Dominican Republic in the opening match of Pool D at the Osaka Municipal City Gymnasium. After dropping the first set, Russia came storming back as the young Dominican squad tired and eventually ran out of gas. Ekaterina Gamova led the way for Russia with 20 points – the 202cm Russian superstar was a dominant force, scoring 15 points on attack alone, while Tatiana Kosheleva added 15 points. Prisilla Rivera finished with 16 points for the Dominican Republic who made 26 errors to Russia's 16 in the match. “My attacks were being blocked in the first set, but after that my spikes worked better,” Gamova said. “They were very motivated in the first set. We did not do a good job of warming up. I intend to get better as time goes on.”

Korea beat Canada 3-0 (25-19, 25-19 25-14)
Korea was well organised and able to offset the physical power of their younger, inexperienced opponents Canada to register a convincing first victory in Osaka. With Korea ranked 21st in the world and Canada 24th, on paper it promised to be a competitive match, but that was not the case – the Canadians had not a single player in their squad with World Championship experience and it showed. Youn-Joo Hwang led the way for Korea with 19 points (18 in attack) while teammate Yeon-Koung Kim, a force at the net with several soaring spikes, chipped in with 14 (13 in attack). Left-hander Sarah Pavan led Canada’s scoring with 16 points (14 in attack) and impressed with both her serving and attacking, but Arnd Ludwig's team paid the price for making 22 errors to Korea's 14. “It was the first match and I had my worries,” Korea’s Kim Yeon-Koung said. “I am happy to finish with a win. All of our serves and receptions went well. Our combinations plays also worked. Serve well and receive well, that is our strategy.”

Turkey beat China 3-1 (19-25, 25-14, 25-20, 25-17)
Turkey upset powerhouse China in four sets in a shock result in the final match of the day in Osaka. China went into the match ranked third in the world, while Turkey 22nd, illustrating all the makings of a mismatch. But Turkey had something to say about that and overcame a 1-0 deficit in emphatic style for a stirring victory. Turkey's Neslihan Darnel, the top scorer at the 2006 Women’s World Championship, closed out the match with an ace and led her side with 26 points (22 on attack). Seda Tokatlioglu added 18 (all on attack). China's Li Juan and Xue Ming both recorded 16 points, while teammate Ma Yunwen contributed 15. “Today is a great day for my team,” Turkey captain Esra Gumus said. “We were preparing for this game for a long time. They are one of the strongest teams in the world.”

Final Standings
Pool A (Tokyo): Peru 2, Serbia 2, Japan 2, Poland 1, Costa Rica 1, Algeria 1
Pool B (Hamamatsu): Brazil 2, Italy 2, Netherlands 2, Czech Republic 1, Puerto Rico 1, Kenya 1
Pool C (Matsumoto): Germany 2, USA 2, Croatia 2, Cuba 1, Thailand 1, Kazakhstan 1
Pool D (Osaka): Russia 2, Korea 2, Turkey 2, China 1, Canada 1, Dominican Republic 1

Highest Scorer By Day
Day 1 (1st Rd): 28 points by Destinee Hooker (USA) in USA’s 3-1 win over Thailand in Matsumoto

Highest Set Score
** New World Championship record 34-32 (CRO v CUB in Pool C) played on October 29 (Day 1) in Matsumoto.

Highest Scoring Matches
220 (POL v JPN in 1st Round) 2-3 (28-26, 25-21, 20-25, 23-25, 12-15) played on October 29 in Tokyo

Tournament Top Scorers
28 Destinee Hooker (USA)
26 Neslihan Darnel (TUR)
25 Saori Kimura (JPN)
24 Joanna Kaczor (POL)
21 Manon Flier (NED)
21 Anna Werblinska (POL)

Birthdays on October 30
Anna Kallistova (CZE) turns 28
Margareta Kozuch (GER) turns 24

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Press Contact - FIVB Press Director Richard Baker, Email:     Mobile. +81 80 2219 2528                   

Coming soon
The FIVB Club World Championships (December 14-21, 2010) in Doha, Qatar
FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships (June 17-26) Rome, Italy

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