Hisamitsu, Tianjin to vie for Asian Women’s Club title and ticket to FIVB World Club Championship
Nakhon Pathom, Thailand, April 24, 2014 – Hisamitsu Springs will take on Chinese powerhouses Bohai Bank Tianjin in the finals of the Asian Women’s Club Volleyball Championship at the Nakhonpathom Municipality Gymnasium after storming past their respective rivals in Thursday’s semifinals.
This will be the eleventh time that a team from China has appeared in the final of the annual tournament since its inauguration in 1999 and the fifth for a team from Japan.
This is the seventh time that Tianjin has made the finals and have claimed the title four times, the most recent being in 2012. Japan’s Hisamitsu Springs has captured the title only once in 2002.
The eventual winners on Friday will be assured a ticket to contest the six-team FIVB Women’s Club World Championship in Zurich, Switzerland from May 7 to 11.
Hisamitsu topple Zhetyssu,
Hisamitsu Springs of Japan, the only team yet to lose a set to their respective rivals heading to the Friday’s final showdown defeated Zhetyssu of Kazakhstan 3-0 (25-22, 25-14, 25-14) in Thursday’s match.
Miyu Nagaoka topscored with 23 points for Hisamitsu Springs including 22 attack hits from 35 attempts, while Alena Omelchenko scored a match-high nine point for Zhetyssu.
“Our serves are very good. We struggled in the first set because Zhetyssu are a very strong team, taking their height advantage over us. They played with aggression, making my players perform nervously. I’m very happy that my team are now in the final. Against Tianjin, I admit that it will be a tough match. The Chinese are very tall with high speed. We will try to do our best to beat them. I hope it will be a good match against the Chinese in the final round,” said Hisamitsu’s head coach Kumi Nakada at the press interview.
Tianjin brush off Taipei in semi-finals
Bohai Bank Tianjin overcame a strong challenge from Taipei, fielding a full Chinese Taipei national team to win 3-0 (25-20, 25-12, 25-17)
Li Ying collected 18 points for Tianjin, while Chen Wan-Ting was Taipei’s major weapon to score 12 points for the team.
“We will try our best in our match against Hisamitsu in the final. We have to make our preparation the best for the final. Today, we did not play cleverly. Against the Japanese, we will field a strong line-up with all senior players. However, we have to learn more skills to cope with the Japanese tactics. I think my players learned a lot from the Japanese as they played in the early semi-final match. The Japanese are very strong, excellent in receiving, attacking and covered the court cleverly. In all, I’m satisfied with our match today against Taipei, but we need to improve on some weak points,” commented Tianjin’s head coach Wang Baoquan.
Hosts repeatedly beat Matin Varamin in playoffs for fifth to eighth place
Hosts Nakhonratchasima came up with an improved form in their clash against Iran’s Matin Varamin to beat the Iranian team 3-0 (25-18, 25-21, 25-17).
Thaphaphaiphan Chaisri was Nakhonratchasima’s top scorer with 18 points, while Mahdiyeh Khajehkolaei collected 12 points for Matin Varamin.
With the convincing win, Nakhonratchasima will not play Vietnam’s Lienvietpostbank, the team they had lost to in the 5th-6th place playoff, with Matin Varamin fighting it out with PLDT of the Philippines for the seventh place.
In-form Lienvietpostbank storm past PLDT
PLDT succumbed to a disappointing 3-0 (25-14, 25-17, 25-15) loss to Vietnam’s Thong Tin Lienvietpostbank.
Do Thi Minh scored a match-high of 17 points for Lienvietpostbank, while Bell Mackenzie Regla Maritza topscored with 13 points for PLDT.
Playoff for ninth and tenth place
India’s KSEB, led by powerful attacker Tiji Raju, took the ninth place in this championship after outclassing winless VAS of Singapore, the team they had already beaten in the group round-robin preliminaries earlier, in comfortable straight sets 3-0 (25-12, 25-17, 25-8) in the 9th-10th place playoff.
Tiji Raju scored 16 points for KSEB, with Yeo Qian Lin Marylyn led VAS with five points.
Though not taking a single set in the tournament, VAS still have something to be proud of as they are the first team ever from Singapore to take part in the Asian Women’s Club Championship since the tournament debut in 1999 in Ubon Ratchathani, Thailand.
April 25 Match schedule
09:00: 7th-8th playoff: PLDT (the Philippines) v Matin Varamin (Iran)
11:00: 5th-6th playoff: Nakhonratchasima (Thailand) v Thong Tin Lienvietpostbank (Vietnam)
13:00: Third-place playoff: Zhetyssu (Kazakhstan) v Taipei (Chinese Taipei)
16:00: Championship match: Hisamitsu Springs (Japan) v Bohai Bank Tianjin (China)