Japan, France Excel Offensively in 4-Set VNL Pool 1 Wins

  0 Wendy Mayer | May 25th, 2018 | Asian Volleyball, Australian volleyball, European volleyball, FIVB Nations League - Men, International Volleyball, News


  • May 25-27, 2018
  • Kindarena, Rouen, France
  • Time Zone: GMT + 2 (US Eastern Time +6)
  • World Rankings: #8 Iran, #9 France, #12 Japan, #16 Australia
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  • Schedule/Results
Date Time Score Set 1 Set 2 Set 3 Set 4 Set 5 Total Report
25 May 17:00 Australia  1–3  Japan 18–25 15–25 25–23 17–25 75–98 P2 P3
25 May 20:00 France  3–1  Iran 25–20 24–26 25–20 25–17 99–83


Japan def. Australia 3-1

  • Japan defeated Australia 25-18, 25-15, 23-25, 25-17
  • Japan moved to 1-0 (3 points); Australia moved to 0-1 (0 points)

Five players scored in double-digits as Japan rolled to a four-set win over Australia to open VNL play.

The Japanese outdid the Aussies 55-39 in kills and 9-5 in aces, while trailing 10-7 in blocks in the win.

Haku Ri was the top scorer in the match with 18 points (11 kills, 3 blocks, 4 aces) for Japan. Masahiro Yanagida (16), Yuji Nishida (15), Tatsuya Fukuzawa (11) and Akihiro Yamauchi (10) rounded out the scoring. Nishida put down a team-best 14 kills, while Yanagida added 11 and Fukuzawa and Yamauchi chipped in 10 apiece. Yanagida also served up four of the team’s nine aces.

Nehemiah Mote led the way for Australia with 16 points (14 kills, 1 block, 1 ace), while Thomas Hodges followed with 11 (10 kills, 1 block) in just over two sets of play. Lincoln Williams turned in eight points, including six kills, in the first two stanzas, while Jordan Richards accounted for four kills and a team-best three blocks.

Set 1 was just a one-point game midway through with Japan holding a slight 12-11 lead. The Japanese then scored four straight to pull away en route to a 25-18 win.

The teams were knotted at 10-all in Set 2 before Japan called timeout and regrouped leading to a 6-3 scoring run. The Japanese closed out the 25-15 win with six straight points.

Hodges started Set 3 and set the table for an Australia comeback with a 7-4 lead. Japan turned a three-point deficit into a 17-16 advantage, before Hodges and Mote teamed up down the stretch to give the Aussies the 25-23 win and extend the match.

Yanagida took over in Set 4, giving Japan an early four-point edge. Ri sprung into action as well, which made it 16-8, and put the match out of reach.


France def. Iran 3-1

  • France defeated Iran 25-20, 24-26, 25-20, 25-17
  • France moved to 1-0 (3 points); Iran moved to 0-1 (0 points)

France racked up 23 more kills than its Iranian counterparts, but had to overcome 30 miscues in a four-set home victory.

France outdid Iran in kills (65-42), but struggled with inconsistency, committing 30 errors (to Iran’s 24) and trailing in blocks (9-8).

Earvin Ngapeth and Jean Patry provided a 1-2 punch for the French with 18 and 17 points respectively. Ngapeth downed a match-high 18 kills, while Patry notched 16 putaways and a block. Nicolas LeGoff chipped in nine points, including a team-leading four blocks. Thibault Rossard and Barthelemy Chinenyeze supplied eight kills apiece to aid a balanced French attack.

Amir Ghafour managed 18 points, all on kills, to pace Iran, but his nearest teammate added just nine points in the loss. Seyed Mousavi Eraghi accounted for five kills and a team-best four blocks to provide support. Four other players added three or more kills: Milad Ghara (5), Farhad Ghaemi (4), Saman Faezi (4) and Ali Shafiei (3).

France took an 8-4 lead in Set 1 and held on for the 25-20 win despite several Iranian rallies that cut the margin to two. Ultimately, Party pounded down the final kill.

It was battle down the stretch in Set 2 as Iran turned a 23-22 deficit into a set-point try with stout blocking. In the end, Seyed and Kolakovic sealed the 26-24 win to even the match.

France recovered and jumped ahead 8-5 in Set 3, but Iran hung around, pulling within one at 19-18. Chinenyeze came through with a few kills to push the French to the 25-20 win.

It Set 4, it was the French who seized the early advantage, leading 8-4 at the first technical timeout. Up just two at 14-12, France put the match out of reach with a 6-0 run.


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About Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer has worked in athletics media relations for the last 20 years. The Northwest Missouri State alumna is currently senior writer for Volleymob.com after spending the last 15 years with Purdue athletics.

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