Tokyo, Japan, September 6, 2017 – Nataliya Goncharova and Tatiana Kosheleva had the hot hands to ignite Russia’s strong 3-1 (22-25, 25-18, 25-22, 28-26) win over hosts Japan in the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Grand Champions Cup at the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium on Wednesday.
Goncharova and Kosheleva combined for 42 of Russia’s 100-point output against Japan. Goncharova had 18 attacks, three blocks and an ace; while Kosheleva had 17 attacks, two blocks and an ace. Russia dominated at the net with 22 blocks in the match. Japanese hitters Risa Shinnabe and Yuki Ishii finished with 17 and 15 points, respectively.
Russia have never lost their second match in their previous four appearances at the World Grand Champions Cup, where they beat Japan in 1993 and 1997, Brazil in 2001 and the Dominican Republic in 2013.Quick links - Volleyball:
FIVB Volleyball World Grand Champions Cup - Women
FIVB Volleyball World Grand Champions Cup - Men
FIVB.com - VolleyballFIVB.com
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Japan took the first set as they outsmarted their opponents with their quick plays and great defence. Russia showed better movement on the floor to build a lead until Kosheleva and Goncharova ensured the set victory to their side with strong spikes. Russia dominated in attacks and blocks to yield a 2-1 set edge, but they committed a lot of errors at the start of the fourth set. The Europeans were able to tie the score towards the end of the set and Goncharova completed the fourth set triumph with a strong attack and a block.