Thursday, August 13, 2020

Fans' support drive Thailand to a 3-1 win over Bulgaria

Jun 04. 2019
Pleumjit Thinkaow smashes the ball to the Bulgarian team. / Photo by Wanchai Kraisornkhajit
Pleumjit Thinkaow smashes the ball to the Bulgarian team. / Photo by Wanchai Kraisornkhajit
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By Lerpong Amsa-ngiam
The Nation

Cheered by thousands of fans at the Hua Mark Indoor Stadium, Thailand rallied back from a set down to beat Bulgaria 3-1 in Pool 11 of the Volleyball Nations League on Tuesday.

The national team maximized their efforts to win their third match in the 2019 League following a

25-27 25-20 25-22 25-23 win and gave the European team their seven straight defeat in the tournament.

“We have to dedicate this win for the fans who pushed our players to fight back when they were down,” said national coach Danai Sriwacharamaytakul.

“The girls are less pressured now as they already won a match this week. We set our target to win at least one match in each pool. They will feel more relaxed in the next two days,” he added.

Earlier in the day, last year’s silver medallists Turkey summoned their best form when they needed it most as they recovered from a third set lapse to beat Dominican Republic 3-1 

The 2003 European Championship runners-up won the entertaining showdown 25-20 21-15 24-26 25-18 and extended their impressive run to six wins against one defeat in the past three weeks.

After dominating the opening set with a superior all-round game, 2015 European Games champions Turkey took charge with powerful smashes to build a solid lead at 23-18. Although Dominica fought back to reduce the gap to 23-21, the European side elevated their game to win two points for a 2-0 set lead.

In the third set, the 2010 Pan American Cup champions tightened their defence for longer rallies to stay neck-and-neck with Turkey. At 25-24, Dominican Gaila Ceneida Lopez blocked a smash from the Turkish side that bounced onto an open court as the Queens of the Caribbean finally took the nail-biting set 26-24.

Dominica carried the momentum into the fourth set but their revolution did not last long. Turkey took control and tore the defence of their foes to pieces to finish them off. “It was what we expected as we had to play an attacking game against Dominican Republic. I’m happy with my team except for the set dropped. We learn from the mistakes and will improve tomorrow,” said Italian Guidetti Giovanni, coach of Turkey. Turkey will play Bulgaria today at 3pm while Thailand will face on Dominican Republic at 6pm. The matches are live on Channel 13 and 33. Thailand lost to Dominica 3-0 at this arena 12 months ago.

“I expect a difficult match as Thailand are playing at home. Every time we play they are always tough. So I don’t expect anything less,” said Kwiek Marcos, Dominican coach.

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