FIVB Volleyball Girls' U18 World Championship

Press release

Greece outplay old foes Slovenia in a hotly-contested all-Europeans battle


Greece's libero Eirini Kokkinaki and captain Olga Strantzali crash while attempting to retrieve a spike

Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, August 2, 2013 – In-form Greece pulled off a hard-fought four-set 25-19 24-26 25-19 25-18 thriller in the 9th-16th playoffs in the Girls’ U18 World Championship at the Liptapanlop Hall on Friday.

Against Slovenia, the team with the similar world ranking No.33, Greece came up in full force in the beginning of the opening set. Olga Strantzali and the 196cm-tall Anthi Vasilantonaki became nightmares of all blockers when they scored several crucial points through spectacular spikes. Slovenia launched waves of counter-attacks in an effort of matching the Greeks’ exceptional tactics, but their determined attempts were to no avail. Greece took the thrilling set 25-19.

The second set was a very closely-contested affair when the leads changed hands for several times. Slovenia, which finished sixth at the European Youth Championship, roared back with heavy attacks and scintillating blocks to win the close set 26-24.

Greece, fifth place at the European Youth Championship, came back on track in the third and fourth sets when Vasilantonaki and Strantzali combined well in puncturing the Slovenian defence with their devastating cross-court spikes to win 25-19 25-18 for the Greece’s eventual 3-1 victory.

In this match, Olga Strantzali emerged as the top scorer of Greece with 25 points including 18 kills from 41 attempts, while Ela Pintar led Slovenia with 13 points. She led the team in the spiking skill with the similar nine points as Lana Scuka, but Pintar fared better in the blocking skill which she claimed four points.

With the dramatic win, Greece now move on to compete in the 9th-12 playoffs, while Slovenia were relegated to the 13th-16th playoffs instead.


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