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 Match info | Description
Italy edge China to eighth place with full sets win

Italy's Francesca Piccinini spikes over China's defense
Macau, China, August 27, 2011 – Italy edged hosts China 3-2 in the 7th to 8th classification match of the 2011 World Grand Prix at the Macau East Asian Games Dome on Saturday.

Italy’s Simona Gioli was the game’s top scorer with 23 points, while Wang Yimei earned 20 points for China.

Italians capitalized on their strong hitting from both sides of wings, while China failed to stop this either by digging or blocking. Italians took the first set at 25-12 in an easy way.

In the second set China adjusted their attack tactics and setter Wei Qiuyue efficiently triggered their 3 main gunners – Hui Ruoqi, Wang Yimei and Xu Yunli from all angles. A solid block by Sara Anzanello has turned the Italian downward trend after the second technical timeout, but the improved defense and reception of China helped the host successfully tie the set score to 1-1.

It was well expected the third set turned to a point-by-point basis which engaged the crowd with much more enthusiastic atmosphere. Both sides showed their strong determination and neither one could build a leading advantage until at 19-21, a 4-0 run from China with a combination of blocking, hard-spike and ace serve from Wang. At the end China closed this important and intense third set at 25-23.

Italians were not discouraged by the failure in the third set but instead quickly build a commanding lead at 8-4. On the other hand, their Chinese opponents seem not fully concentrated and incurred several unnecessary errors in reception and attack. Italian libero Giulia Leonardi's solid defense saved several sharp attack from both Wang and Hui and Italian continued their upward track until 20-15. Two more ace serves from Lucia Bosetti and a skillful tip from Gioli brought two teams to the 15-point fifth set.

Italy continued their impressive performance from the fourth set and quickly forced China to request the first timeout at 3-0. Chinese came back with a more solid performance and well-spread attack tactic and closed the gap to 6-8; however, Bosetti's consecutive hits stopped the upward trend of China and set the home host at the last position in final round.

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