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Ana Beatriz, Akman put net defence in spotlight as Brazil and Turkey claim semifinal berths

 
Kubra Caliskan celebrate with Cansu Ozbay as Turkey advance to final four of the 2019 VNL
 
Nanjing, China, July 4, 2019 – Brazil’s Ana Beatriz Correa and Turkey's Kubra Caliskan (Akman) had strong performances at net defence on Sunday, leading their teams into the semifinals of the 2019 FIVB Volleyball Nations League.



Ana Beatriz stood her ground at the net, deflecting eight attacks of Poland to win 3-2 (22-25, 25-21, 22-25, 25-19, 15-10). Ana Beatriz also scored 14 attack points, while Gabi Guimaraes added 17 points to lead Brazil in their second encounter with Poland at the VNL.

The Brazilian squad lost their preliminary round matchup with the Polish side in five sets, and the main difference this time were the blocks that reduced the attacking proficiency of the Europeans, leaving Malwina Smarzek to do the tough task in scoring. Smarzek scored 32 points on a losing effort.

Poland dropped to their second loss in Pool B, giving way for Brazil and the United States to claim the semifinal spots.

In the second match, Akman led the block party against the Italians to lead her team to a 3-0 (25-21, 25-15, 25-21) triumph. The Turkish middle blocker scored four blocks and seven attacks, while Ebrar Karakurt also helped out on defence with two blocks and on offence with 15 attacks.



With Turkey’s excellent block and defence, Italy only had one player – Paola Egonu – scoring in double figures with 12 markers, while the rest were limited to below 10 points. Miryam Fatime Sylla had nine points and Elena Pietrini was contained to score just five points in the match.

Turkey’s second win guaranteed them the top spot in Pool A and the semifinal berth, awaiting the remaining spot to be decided between Italy and hosts China on Friday.

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