China booked first women's volleyball semi-final position on
Tuesday after beating Japan 3-0 in a quarterfinal round match at
the Athens Olympics.
China completed a clinical three-set win over its arch-rival in
Asia in one hour and 49 minutes.
China, who ranked fifth at Sydney Olympics four years ago, made
a good start in the first set, opening a 3-0 lead after only one
Japan replied by improving their fast-attacking to lead into the
first technical time-out 8-6.
However, China answered back with a 8-2 run and it was left to
Wang Lina to claim the final point of the set which China took it
In the second set, Japan began to play improved volleyball,
opening 7-3 lead. But it wasn't long before China found their fast
attacking and their high blocking game again and tied the set up at
Kana Oyama scored all Japan's last four points at the final five
minutes but could not stop China close the set at 25-22.
Falling behind with two sets, Japanese side started more evenly
in the third. The score were tied from 1-1 to 15-15 before China
started to gain the ascendancy.
With Wang Lina's three points, China launched a 5-0 run to take
advantage. A wonderful spike from Zhang Ping gave China a 23-19
advantage and her serve made China finish the game with 25-20.
After the easy victory, China entered the semi-finals and will
face the winner between Italy and Cuba, which will be held later on
(Xinhua News Agency August 24, 2004)