Japan, Thailand to dispute AVC title
BIÑAN, Laguna—Japan and Thailand are set to duke it out for the crown in the AVC Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship after both powerhouses locked up spots in the finals Wednesday at Alonte Sports Arena.
World no. 6 Japan was the first to advance to the finals after thrashing defending champions China in straight sets, 25-17, 25-18, 25-18, in the semifinals.
Japan displayed an offense so potent five of its players put up double digits in the scoring department.
Risa Shinnabe and Rika Nomoto had 13 points apiece while captain Nana Iwasaka had a dozen.
Mami Uchiseto and Mai Okumura then added 11 and 10 points apiece.
Jin Ye led world no.1 China with 15 points, though this Chinese team isn’t the country’s main squad.
In the second game, Thailand put a stranglehold on Korea 25-20, 25-20, 25-21 in a matchup of two top 15 teams in the FIVB rankings.
Thailand, the reigning Southeast Asian Games gold medalists, are ranked no. 14 in the FIVB while Korea is at no. 10 but the Thais had the Koreans cowering under their relentless offense.
The Thais converted on 50-of-119 spikes while neutralizing the Koreans who scored on 35 of their 120 kill attempts.
Ajcharaporn Kongyot had 17 points to lead Thailand while 17-year-old phenom added 16 points.
Korean superstar Kim Yeon-koung had 21 points but labored for her numbers going 18-of-48 on her spike attempts.
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