FIVB Volleyball Girls' U18 World Championship


In-form Taipei finish in 11th place after beating Greece

Chinese Taipei's Tseng Wan Ling attacks past Greece's Olga Strantzali

Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, August 4, 2013 – Small and agile Chinese Taipei defied the odds to topple much stronger Greece in a dramatic four-set match (25-23, 25-18, 14-25, 25-22) to finish in 11th place in the Girls’ Under-18 World Championship in Liptapanlop Hall on Sunday.
Tseng Wan Ling top-scored with 18 points for Chinese Taipei, 16 of them from her devastating attacks. Anthi Vasilantonaki led Greece with 28 points, including 21 kills from 60 attempts.

Both teams did not qualify for the previous world meet in Turkey two years ago. Chinese Taipei are ranked No. 17 in the world junior and youth ranking, while Greece are 33rd. However, Greece fielded much stronger players with a height average of 182cm against Taipei’s 170cm.

Despite the height disadvantage, Chinese Taipei played confidently. Chang Chih Hsuan and Cheng Li Ting combined well to puncture Greece’s defence with their lightning-fast attacks which always went unanswered. Chinese Taipei clinched the close set 25-23.

Holding a 1-0 advantage, Chinese Taipei took command initially in the second set. They launched a series of spectacular fast spikes, much to the great surprise of their taller rivals. Chinese Taipei continued their remarkable form to win the set 25-18. 

The Anthi Vasilantonaki, who is 196cm tall, gave Greece some hope, hitting devastating cross-court spikes in the third set. Greece jumped to an initial 8-0 lead and stretched it to 22-10, thanks largely to their height advantage at the net. As expected, Greece took the set 25-14.

The fourth set was more exciting because the two teams exchanged the lead before Greece lost their touch, allowing the Taiwanese girls more attacking opportunities. Chinese Taipei controlled the game smartly to win the set 25-22 and the hard-fought match.

With the win, Chinese Taipei jumped for joy as they finished in 11th place, while Greece had to be content with 12th place.  

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