Russia keep rolling but USA make statement at World Cup

Russia’s undefeated record at the FIVB World Cup was never under threat as the tournament leaders cruised to a comfortable 3-0 (25-19, 25-13, 25-18) victory over Cuba on Thursday.

Nataliya Obmochaeva had 16 points for the Russians who improved to a 5-0 record to remain one point clear of Team USA who bullied Algeria in a 3-0 (25-7, 25-2, 25-5) mauling.

Algeria’s two-point haul in the second set was the lowest in World Cup history as the top-ranked Americans made a statement with their fourth win in five matches..

Tori Dixon had 16 points for the US to outscore the entire Algerian team, with Megan Easy the next best with 12 points.

Japan had a much tougher outing in the match of day five against the Dominican Republic.

The hosts prevailed in five tough sets (25-18, 20-25, 30-32, 25-15, 15-13) to sit in third spot on 12 points with four wins.

Despite the loss, the Dominican Republic sit in sixth spot on 10 points with a 3-2 record.

China were without boom spiker Zhu Ting but still had too much firepower for Peru en route to a 3-0 (25-11, 25-18, 25-17) win.

Yuan Xinyue led with 16 points as China ended the first round in fifth spot on 12 points.

Serbia also posted their fourth victory of the championship – a 3-0 (25-16, 25-19, 25-16) win over Korea – to keep pace with the leading nations in fifth spot.

In the other match on day five, Argentina kept Kenya winless with a straight-sets 25-12, 25-17, 25-20 victory.

All teams will now move cities for the second phase of the round-robin section of the tournament.

The action gets back underway in the early hours of Sunday morning (Eastern Time).