Brilliant Borgo begins Brazil career in style  

Brazil debutante Paula Borgo says the 6,000-strong home crowd in Brasilia played a massive part in helping the team dismantle China in straight sets in their Volleyball Nations League opener. 

Making her first appearance in the green and yellow, Borgo scored 16 points in Brazil’s 3-0 success in Pool 3.  

“Our team worked very well as a whole and each one did what was expected of them,” said the 25-year-old. 

Playing for Brazil, you feel the strength of the fans. That helps us a lot inside the court.” 

Contributions from Gabriela Guimarães (20), otherwise known as Gabi, and middle blocker Mara (12) helped them over the line and coach José Roberto Guimarães was pleased with the green and yellows’ perfect start at the Nilson Nelson Gymnasium. 

China has a very good defensive volume, so we need to force our serve more. Our defensive system performed very well today, allowing our counterattack to be more efficient,” said Guimarães. 

“We do not have the tallest team in the competition, so we need to create a lot of speed so we can stand out. The defence was also a highlight of our team today.” 

Sorokaite delighted with start in Poland

Elsewhere, Italy’s stunning fightback from two sets down to defeat a strong Poland side in their own backyard caught the eye. 

Indre Sorokaite’s stunning 27-point display was instrumental in Italy’s comeback and the opposite was quick to praise her fellow teammates. 

“It is great to start the tournament with a win, it is never easy to beat Poland, especially when playing in front of their fans,” said Sorokaite, 30. 

Even against a well-organised team, we were able for many stages to impose our game, despite the few weeks of work together. I think that tonight was a team victory, because everyone who entered the field gave their contribution.” 

The Italy coach Davide Mazzanti was particularly satisfied how quickly his team gelled together in their Pool 1 success at the Stegu Arena.  

“We are happy to have started this VNL with a great victory and above all and against a level opponent like Poland,” he said after his team’s 3-2 victory in a two-hour marathon on the opening day. 

“Overall the thing that makes me most happy is to see how the girls, while being part of different groups, are integrating very well, despite the time to work wasn’t much. “ 

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