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Volleyball: Japan, China set date for Pool D clash in Women’s Worlds

Japan’s Risa Shinnabe (right) spikes against Chinese teen star Zhu Ting in the teams’ match-up in last year’s World Grand Prix Finals in Sapporo. Photo: FIVB.

Japan’s Risa Shinnabe (right) spikes against Chinese teen star Zhu Ting in the teams’ match-up in last year’s World Grand Prix Finals in Sapporo. Photo: FIVB.

July 5, 2014: Japan and China will face off in their fifth and final Pool D match in Bari at this year’s FIVB Women’s World Championship, which will be held in six cities across Italy from September 23-October 12.

 

Japan and China – World Nos. 3 and 5 respectively – are grouped with Cuba, Puerto Rico, Belgium and Azerbaijan.

 

Thailand and Kazakhstan, Asia’s other representatives in the 24-team tournament, will compete in Pool C in Verona, where they will also face each other on the final day of group matches on September 28.

 

Thailand – winners of last year’s Asian Championship – and Kazakhstan face a tough start against defending champions Russia, USA, Netherlands and a sixth NORCECA side to be confirmed this month.

 

Russia will take on Thailand in their opening Pool C match as they begin their bid for a third successive title with the first of the tournament’s three group phases.

 

In the first phase, the 24 teams compete into four round-robin pools of six. The top four teams from each pool will advance to the second round as the 16 teams are split into two pools of eight, with the top three in each advancing to the third round.

 

The third and final round is again round-robin, with the top two teams in each pool advancing to the semi-finals before the final is held in Milan on October 12. The third-ranked teams in each pool will tie for fifth place.

 

Russia won their second straight Women’s World Championship title in 2010 by beating Brazil in the final, while hosts Japan completed the podium after beating USA in the bronze-medal match.

 

Russia’s victories in 2006 and 2010 followed the Soviet Union’s successes in 1952, 1956, 1960, 1970 and 1990. Japan (1962, 1967, 1974) and Cuba (1978, 1994, 1998) have three wins each, while China won in 1982 and 1986, and Italy triumphed in 2002.

 

Source: FIVB (www.fivb.org); Editing by SportAsia

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