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World Grand Prix 2005 - Match Descriptive

Match Descriptive

China beat Japan 3-0 (25-23, 25-22, 25-23) - duration 1:33
18-Jul, start time: 18:00, end time: 19:33 - Attendance: 8'600
City: Sendai; Hall : Sendai City Gymnasium
Olympic champs overwhelm hosts
Sendai, Japan, July 18, 2005 -- China finished the World Grand Prix Final Round on a high by sweeping Japan in straight sets in Monday's last match.
The Olympic champions won 25-23, 25-22, 25-23 to end the week with a 3-2 win-loss record, while Japan slipped to 1-4.
Japan spent the first set playing catch-up, and China held three set points at 24-21.
The home side saved two of them, much to the delight of the partisan capacity crowd, but could not stop Chu Jinling from spiking a searing winner from the left to close out the set 25-23.
Chu, Zhang Ping and Yang Hao all had five points for China in a fast-paced opening set, while Miyuki Takahashi replied with six for Japan.
Kaoru Sugayama and Ai Otomo started to find their range in the second set, but a soaring spike down the middle from Yang took China to the first technical break 8-7 ahead.
Although Japan led sporadically, China never allowed them to escape, as their wall of blockers turned back Japan's attacks.
China's bullet serving was causing all sorts of problems, but, at 24-20, again they had difficulty putting away the set.
Head coach Chen Zhonghe called a time-out after his players wasted two of them, but Zhou glided down the centre before closing out the set 25-22.
China looked in a hurry to finish the game, and surged ahead 9-4 in the third set.
Yang was hitting the ball with such venom on China's left side that even the agile Japanese defenders could not retrieve it, and the Olympic champs led 16-13 at the second technical time-out.
The 1.69-metre Sugayama interrupted China's march with some spectacular leaps and spikes of her own, and a Makiko Horai winner on the right, quickly followed by a block, brought Japan level 19-19.
But China, for whom Chu scored a team-high 18 points, held on 25-23.