Dutch seek first World Grand Prix top six finish since 2009
Lausanne, Switzerland, August 13, 2014 - Group leaders the Netherlands and the Czech Republic are aiming to win their respective Final Four competitions in the FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix, to raise their status in the premier annual women’s competition.
The Netherlands will enter the Final Four of Group 2 with the best record among the teams in the group with eight wins and just one loss|
The Netherlands, who won the competition in 2007, are on track to qualify for the Final Six of Group 1. The last time they were in the top six was in 2009. However, with their positive results in the Intercontinental Round, the Dutch have a good chance of progressing.
The Czech Republic have won their six matches in the World Grand Prix season so far, surpassing their win-record of two wins in nine matches in their only previous season in the World Grand Prix.
Meanwhile, teams will hope to challenge Brazil's position in the standings in the final run of the Intercontinental Round in Group 1.
· Poland have won five matches this season and can equal their second best World Grand Prix season with two more wins.
· Belgium are aiming to be the first World Grand Prix debutants to finish in the top six since Serbia in 2011.
· The Netherlands still have the best record of eight wins and one loss among all the teams in Group 2.
· This is Puerto Rico’s best ever season in the World Grand Prix; they have won seven matches this season, two more than their total match-wins in their four previous seasons.
· Bulgaria, together with the Czech Republic, are the only unbeaten teams in Group 3.
· Croatia are the only debutants in Group 3 to have made it to the finals.
· Kazakhstan’s three wins this season came in straight sets; before this, they had never won in straight sets in the World Grand Prix.
· Brazil are the only country which have the maximum points after six matches in Group 1.
· The Dominican Republic have only one victory this season so far; they won 3-2 against Turkey last week.
· Thailand are on a four-match losing streak in the competition.
· USA have won their last six World Grand Prix matches played in Bangkok, only dropping two sets.
· Italy have played three World Grand Prix matches in Russia, losing to Russia and winning against Cuba and Thailand.
· Germany will reach their 150th match after this weekend and will become the ninth nation to play at least 150 World Grand Prix matches.
· Russia are on a four-match losing streak in the World Grand Prix; if they fail to snap this losing streak, this could be the first time they will not qualify for the Final Round in three successive seasons.
· Turkey can reach the Final Round for the second time following their third place finish in 2012.
· China have played 54 matches in Macau in the World Grand Prix, the most by a single nation at a specific venue.
· Japan have won their last two World Grand Prix matches in Macau.
· Korea’s Kim Yeon-Koung set a scoring record of 42 points last week, making her the top scorer in Group 1 with 146 total points, 28 points more than the second best scorer Zhu Ting of China.
· Serbia need to win two more sets to get their 100th set-win in the World Grand Prix, becoming the 14th nation to win at least 100 sets in the competition.
Click here for the full Group 1 statistical preview.
Click here for the full Group 2 Finals statistical preview.
Click here for the full Group 3 Finals statistical preview.
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