FIVB Volleyball Girls' U18 World Championship

Press release

Determined Brazil come back to beat Italy in thrilling tie-breaker

Brazil's players run to hug one another after their hard-fought win over Italy

Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, August 1, 2013 – World No.3 Italy left the Liptapanlop Hall with heads low in great despair after suffering a bitter 2-3 (18-25 25-14 25-23 22-25 15-7) loss to world No.2 and three-time world champions Brazil in a do-or-die last 16 teams playoff in the Girls’ U18 World Championship on Thursday.

Italy came much stronger this time after finishing a dismal 11th place in the previous edition in Turkey two years ago, while powerhouses Brazil also have their sights firmly set on winning their fourth title on the same place here at which they had won their third in 2009. 

As expected, both sides got off to a thrilling start to trade attacking right from the opening whistle.  Locked in a tight contest for a 9-9 equaliser, Italy came up with mighty attacks. Smashing machine Anna Nicoletti unleashed a series of spectacular spikes to move Italy ahead 20-14.

The Italians stretched the lead to 24-17, thanks largely to the fantastic offensive mobility of Nicoletti’s powerful cross-court attacks from the back court and scintillating blockings. Italy allowed the formidable rivals only one more point from the Laura Grigolo’s unforced serving mistake to take the thrilling set 25-18.

Terrific Lorenne Geraldo’s thundering attacks and an impenetrable defence gave Brazil a successful comeback in the second set, which they won comfortably 25-14.

The third set saw Brazil flex their muscles to race to an initial 10-4 lead before widening the gap to 17-12. Italy regrouped and played more consistently to tie 24-24. However, things turned sour for the Italians shortly when they made two unforced attacking errors, leaving Brazil to clinch the hard-fought set 25-23.

Italy took an upper hand in the fourth set to lead 8-4 and widened the margin to 15-11. The indomitable Brazilians, powered by hard-attacking Lorenne Geraldo and high-leaping Gabriela Da Silva Candido, closed the gap 17-17. Italy fared better in the final assault to win the thriller 25-22.
The tie-breaker turned out to be a one-sided affair from the beginning when Brazil carried out explosive attacks to lead 8-1. Italy clawed their ways back to narrow the gap 4-8, but from then they became more prone with unforced spiking mistakes. Brazil stormed on the win the set 15-7, the exhausting match and a place in the quarter-finals.


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