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USA's captain: 'Every time we play them it’s a battle'


USA improved to 7-1 after beating Japan on Saturday

 Sendai, Japan, August 17, 2013 – USA cruised past Japan 3-1 (25-17, 25-19, 21-25, 25-18) on the second day of action in Pool M of the FIVB World Grand Prix at Sendai City Gymnasium. USA captain Kristin Hildebrand said it was a tough win.

USA captain Kristin Hildebrand: "First, congratulations to Japan; they are a wonderful team and every time we play them it’s a battle, as it was today. They made us work really hard for each point and pushed us in every set. I thought we did a good job and I’m proud of my teammates for enduring the hard moments to get the win."

USA coach Karch Kiraly: "I have a great respect for the Japanese programme. I have been involved as a player and coach with many great competitions in Japan and with Japan national teams, so it’s always an honour to play them. They work so hard and are so well coached, and today it was another great challenge. Our team played smart volleyball, made some good plays and also exerted some pressure from the service line." 

(Re. 20 blocking points): "Blocking is an important part of our defensive strategy and our first line of defence. We make it more possible to be a good blocking team when we serve well. We did some of that today and that gave our blockers lots of opportunities."

(Re. speed of Japan team): "The Japanese team is a great role model for many people in the world of volleyball, especially with their defensive skills and the speed they play the game. We aspire to play the kind of defence that Japan plays. We also want to play with a lot of speed. Today, we felt our speed could neutralise some of the speed of Japan and it was a pretty fast game from both sides of the net."

Japan captain Saori Kimura: "Like yesterday, we couldn’t do well at the start of the game." 

Japan coach Masayoshi Manabe: "The Americans’ block was so strong it was a big problem for us and we must sort this out before our next game. Also, I don’t know why we are starting games so badly; it’s something I have to sort out."




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