Sunday, 16 January 2022
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 Match info | Press Conference
We had to fight for every ball: Lo Bianco

Italy captain Eleonora Lo Bianco:

It was a very hard game today because we had to fight for every ball, but I think it was a very good game for us. I'm very happy that we won today against Japan.

Italy No. 16 Lucia Bosetti:

I'm very happy to win the game because it was very difficult to play against Japan. They are good at defense and it's very difficult to get points off them.

Italy coach Massimo Barbolini:

First, I have to congratulate my players because I think they played a very tough match over four sets. It was very difficult. So I'm happy because this was one of the more difficult matches that we have played and won in this Grand Prix. It's always difficult to play against Japan, because we know the characteristics of their team. I think this victory means we are improving little by little, which I think is important for the Grand Prix and overall in this long, long season.

(Re. not starting Ortolani) Because she has played in all the matches so far in this Grand Prix, so I think it was right for her to rest one game. But she was ready to play. We have to work and we have to rest and we have to try out certain situations, so for this reason Ortolani and Del Core didn't start this match. For our team now, this is normal.

Japan coach Masayoshi Manabe:

Because Italy's serves were very tough our reception didn't go well. And some of our spikes were blocked by a single opponent.

(Re. how can Ebata improve and become starter) She didn't have so many errors in her spiking, but needs to improve her defense and blocking.

(Re. what about Japan's serving today) We practiced serves but it would have been better if they has served better in the first set.

Japan captain Erika Araki:

I was really disappointed about the defeat today because we could have won this match. We will play against Italy in the finals, so we have to practice and try to win there.

Japan No. 14 Yukiko Ebata:

I couldn't play well until today, but today I was selected as a starter, so I was thinking I must play really well, so I did my best.

Japan No. 12 Saori Kimura:

I didn't start out playing so well and I think I was dragging the team down a bit. I will try to do better from tomorrow.

(Re. not scoring so many points in first two sets) I came into the match as I wished, but in the first and second sets the balls I got were really difficult to hit and that's one of the reasons why I didn't get many points. From the third set on, I tried to forget the first two sets and tried to improve and that helped me to get better in the latter part of the match.


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