WOQT Day 4 Recap: Desperate times for Dominican Republic and Kazakhstan

The competition reached halfway point, bringing first almost certain answers about the teams who will win Olympic berth. Kazakhstan and Dominican Republic recorded their fourth loss, making it almost impossible to go further.

Mathematically both teams still have chances if they win next three matches, to reach table scores of Korea, Netherlands and Japan. The latter however would have to ‘help’ losing all of their matches in the coming days.

Check out WOQT  Day 3 recap here.

Italy vs Peru

Result: 3-0 (25-19, 25-16, 25-17) – watch full match here

Italy continues its winning streak, recording 4th victory in a row and keeping the leaders position in WOQT table. Peru remains 5th with 6 points, but coach Mauro Marasciulo assures that the team won’t give up their Olympic dream. Despite the loss, Marasciulo admitted he loved to see Italian style of volleyball and high level of the game presented by his opponent.

[quote cite=’Mauro Marasciulo via FIVB’]I was in Italy volleyball for 20 years so I can appreciate it. We wanted to win this game as professionals. We did OK but made mistakes at decisive moments. We will continue to strive to make the Olympics. We have tough matches in the coming days.[/quote]

Captian Antonella Del Core said that the point-by-point approach after a tough beginning allowed the team to win. Her coach, Marco Bonitta, focused on his opponents young age. “I think in one or two years they will be a strong team“, he commented on the potential of Peru.

Italy’s toughest match is still to come. Bonitta’s team will meet their local rival Netherlands on May 20, while Peru goes onto the next match against favourite of the competition, Korea.

Full WOQT preview can be found here.

Korea vs Kazakhstan

Result: 3-0 (25-16, 25-11, 25-21) – watch full match here

Korea won their third match, causing upset for Kazakhstan, who are still to get their first victory at the WOQT. The strong straight set victory was especially satisfying for coach Lee Jungchul, as the team had to play two matches within last 24 hours.

[quote cite=’Lee Jungchu via FIVBl’]Today all the players were able to play and that was great. It was not easy to play two games in 24 hours. We won yesterday so we were not as tired as we could have been.[/quote]

Korea’s performance wasn’t a surprise for Kazakhstan. Coach Vyacheslav Shapran recalls a few scrimmages played with Korea prior to the event when his team couldn’t score more than 15 points in each set. He also shared his prediction that Korea will be among those teams who wills ecure their Olympic berth.

Both Korean players Kim Yeon-Koung and Yang Hyo-Jin emphasized the difficulty of playing so early after facing Japan late in the evening the day before.
After a rest day, Korea will be facing Peru while Kazakhstan will play another Asian opponent, Thailand.

WOQT Results & Predictions

[table id=4 /]

INFO:

R – FIVB Ranking
NO – Next Opponent
NGP – Next Game Prediction
OFRP – Our Final Result Prediction

Netherlands vs Dominican Republic

Result: 3-0 (25-22, 25-18, 25-21) – watch full match here

Netherlands went back on track, recording their second straight set victory after defeating Dominican Republic. The second team from NORCECA Olympic Qualifier is facing tough moments after recording the 4th loss in the competition.

[quote cite=’Giovanni Guidetti via FIVB’]We played very aggressively. We were in trouble in the third set but got lucky with our substitutes.This is the kind of victory that makes a coach happy because you see a lot of good players in the team.[/quote]

Dominican Republic coach Marcos Kwiek found it tough to find words after the match. While yesterday his team’s form seemed to be raising up, today brought another painful upset. Kwiek tried to sub in different players, hoping to make a difference.

[quote cite=’Marcos Kwiek via FIVB’]There could have been more consideration given to the scheduling of this tournament. We had players abroad that returned and we didn’t have much time to prepare.[/quote]

Substitution players worked out well for the Dutch in the third set, as opposite Lonneke Sloetjes pointed out, praising her teammates for doing a good job. Captain Bethania De La Cruz admitted her team knows how tough the road to Rio has just became for her team. “We just have to try and play our own volleyball“, she said not giving up on her hopes.

Full WOQT schedule can be found here.

Japan vs Thailand

Result: 3-2 (20-25, 25-23, 23-25, 25-23, 15-13) – watch full match here

WOQT rookie Thailand took hosting team Japan to the tie-break, but lost eventually after a close fight in the fifth set. Thai score 1 point of the match, keeping their hopes to secure their first-ever Olympic berth. Japan stays on the 4th position in WOQT table with 8 points.

The fourth position is only just enough to secure Olympic berth, but after two last performances pressure falls on Japan to remain among the top teams. On the Day 5 both Japan and Thailand will be facing Dominican Republic and Kazakhstan respectively – the only tow teams without any victory in the competition.