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Germany defeat the Netherlands in European Olympic Qualification opener

Germany celebrate their victory against the Netherlands
Ankara, Turkey, January 04, 2016 - In a close first match in Women's European Olympic Qualification Tournament Pool A, Germany defeated the Netherlands in five sets 3-2 (26-28, 25-22, 25-22, 20-25, 15-11). Germany last participated in an Olympic tournament in 2004 and the Netherlands in 1996.

Speaking after the match, Germany captain Margareta Anna Kozuch said: “There were a lot of ups and downs today. I think that both teams played well, and I am really happy that we won and got the result we were hoping for, as the Netherlands are a really strong team. We had a fine balance in the team; when I was down, the rest of the team was up, so we managed to keep a good balance throughout the match.

“There is still a long road towards Olympic qualification. Now we need to cool down both mentally and physically after such an intense and long match. Every single match will be tough, and you need to be on top in every one of them to qualify for the Olympics.”

Dutch captain Maret Balkenstein-Grothues said: “We obviously did not play our best game of volleyball. I thought we had a good chance of winning the match when we turned things around in the fourth set, but unfortunately not. Our attack was simply not at its best, and we made too many mistakes. At the same time, Germany are a solid team.

“We lost the battle, but we have not lost the war. Now we all have to go back and have a look in the mirror to see what we can do better. We start over tomorrow,” she added.

The Women's European Olympic Qualification Tournament continues later today with a Pool B encounter between Poland and Russia and a Pool A match between Croatia and tournament hosts Turkey.

Click here for information about the match schedule.


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