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 2002 Info
World Grand Prix 2003 - Press Info

Match Descriptive

U.S.A. beat Japan 3-2 (24-26, 25-17, 25-15, 23-25, 15-12) - duration 2.06
22-Jul, start time: 15.07, end time: 17.13 - Attendance: 500
USA hold out fast finishing Japan

USA kept their unbeaten record intact with a thrilling 3-2 win over Japan in Pool A, coming from behind 1-0 to eventually wrap up the win in five sets in a stunning match in the Palazzo dello Sport in Gioia del Colle.

Bright match, sometimes very attractive. That is the resume of the match between Japan and USA, won by the Americans 2-3.

Both sides came out fighting with Japan entering the game with the very young Kurihara Legumi, at a massive 186cm, starting for the first time.

In, what was a titanic struggle in the first set USA were able to call on the experience of Thomas and Berg to keep them in contention but Japan prevailed clinching the set in a nail biting two-point margin.

However USA reacted best in the second set and in what style, powering their way to a clear eight-point winning margin. The script for the third set was much the same with Japan trailing by 10 at the end.

But Japan soon regained their composure and led by the excellent attack of Megumi Kurihara they fought back to clinch the fourth set by another solitary two points.

It was all down to the tiebreaker with USA hanging on by their finger nails, trying to stop Japan, who had timed their run to perfection. Again, the margin was close, three points this time as USA's and the match's top scorer on the day Prikeba Phipps (20 points) sealed the win to keep USA's unbeaten record alive, while Japan were resigned on still searching for their first victory in the preliminary rounds.