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World League 2002 - Press Info

Match Descriptive

France beat Japan 3-1 (25-16, 25-22, 23-25, 25-21) - duration 1:10
07-Jul, start time: 14:05, end time: 15:15 - Attendance: 5,073
France wins over Japan to keep top spot in Pool D
France on Sunday continued to power over Japan, deploying good all-round play in Intercontinental Round 2, to retain the lead in Pool D of the FIVB World League
French libero Henno performed well to set the pace for his team,opening the way for quick center combinations spikes and good attacks from the sides. France took a 13-10 lead in the first set, enhanced by the powerful blocking ability of the big three - Granvorka, Montmeat and Patin. Good spikes and services by Kato helped Japan to slightly close the gap, before France turned up the heat with a string of good services to unsettle the Japanese setter and make it difficult for the opposition to drive home their spikes. France put Japan away 25-16 to go one up.
The host team immediately ran up a commanding lead in the opening stages of the second set, scoring on four spikes and three consecutive block points by Granvorka and Marcuet. Kato and Morishige of Japan returned the favor to stay in the match, but at 24-22 for France, Kieffer finished off the set with his center spike points.
In the third set, Japan came back to take a 9-8 lead, scoring good block points, sharp spikes and good digs. Japan's captain Kato lifted his team's spirits by his service points, back spikes and fighting spirit which had them in front 16-12 and gave them the set 25-23 after Morishige's service points, Matsuta's spike point and fine block by Itoh.
The fourth set opened with some crowd-thrilling rallies as the sides exchanged the lead until 12-12. Japan edged ahead after some successful center combination spikes, but France reversed the score at 18-16 and went on to win the set 25-21.
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