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China Sweeps Russia 3-0 in FIVB World Grand Prix 2006
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Olympic champions China completed a 3-0 victory over Russia to win the title of the Hong Kong tournament of the FIVB World Grand Prix 2006 in Hong Kong on Sunday.


China, who rallied from two sets down to beat Russia in the Athens Olympics final in 2004, repeated a stunning victory over the rival with three straight sets 25-15, 25-23, 25-21.


Chinese Head Coach Chen Zhonghe was satisfied with the team's performance.


"We had sufficient preparation for today's game," said Chen.


"I'm glad to see that our players were full of enthusiasm and they did very well, especially in serving and attacking."


"They had improved a lot in defense too," Chen said.


China came strong into the first set with a 12-5 attacking run and made it 25-15.


The Russians regained their form in the second set and managed to take a one-point lead at the second technical time-out. But the best scorer Yang Hao stepped out with a series of fierce spikes to help China clinch the second set 25-23.


China took an early 15-10 lead with their stable performance in spiking and blocking in the third set and then they never handed the rival any chance, sealing the 3-0 victory.


"Russia has a lot of tall players, we had to adopt swift attacks when playing against Russia. And seemingly it functions well.


"We still missed some points due to some stupid mistakes, but it doesn't matter. we want our players to gain confidence and experience in competitions, " added Chen.


Russia's head coach Caprara Giovanni, who said he had found China's weak points to take advantage of, said they lost to China because of techniques problems.


"Congratulations to China. They played very well. They dominated the game today. We have to work harder."


"We have to work on the techniques in order to defeat China in the coming World Championships in three months' time," said Giovanni.


(Xinhua News Agency August 21, 2006)

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