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Women s Olympic Games 2004 - Press Conference

Press conference

Italy beat Japan 3-0 (25-16, 25-13, 25-17) - duration 1:11
16-Aug, start time: 14:00, end time: 15:11 - Attendance: 2'800
City: Athens; Hall : Peace and Friendship Stadium
Italy dominates Japan
World champions Italy proved too strong for a gallant Japanese side claiming their Pool A match 3-0 (25-16, 25-13, 25-17) at the Peace and Friendship Stadium.

Had this match-up taken place thirty years ago, it would have been in all probability Japan the team who dominated. But, nowadays Italy ranks among the world's elite teams and Japan were unable to contend with their variety and power.

The spikes by Elisa TOGUT and Simona RINIERI DENNIS were too much for Japan in the first set as Italy sailed to an easy win, never really being troubled as they soon found their rythym.

The second set continued in much the same vein with Japan finding it difficult to finish successfully their attacks because of the good Italian blocking (11 kills in total for Italy), mainly thanks to Antonella del CORE who succeeded with three kills. Miki SASAKI and Megumi KURIHARA -the offensive weapons of the Japanese team - were struggling to win points, as their spiking percentage was poor: 10 successes out of 26 attempts and 10 out of 32 respectively. There was no surprise when the second set ended 25-13 in just 19 minutes in favour of the Italians.

A good start by the Japanese in the third set was followed by a quick Italian comeback. Italy took charge of the game once again to seal a 25-17 victory.

Italy's leading scorers were TOGUT, RINIERI DENNIS and CORE with 16 points each, while SASAKI (12 points) and KURIHARA (10) were the top scorers for Japan.
ONS / sk