Bulgaria and Netherlands continue successful start to Japan 2018 qualifiers


Bulgaria made it two wins from two at the European World Championship qualifiers

Lausanne, Switzerland, August 23, 2017 – Bulgaria and the Netherlands won their second matches from two as the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship, Japan 2018 CEV European Qualifiers continued on Wednesday.   

It is the third and final round of European qualifications for the 2018 edition of the Women’s World Championship and runs from August 22-27 at the Topsport Centrum in Rotterdam in the Netherlands. 

The teams play each other once in a round-robin format and the winners and runners-up will qualify for Japan 2018. Russia, Serbia, Turkey, Italy, Azerbaijan and Germany have already booked their places in the World Championship, which runs from September 29-October 20, 2018.

Bulgaria fought back from losing the opening set to defeat the Czech Republic 3-1 (18-25, 26-24, 25-16, 25-21). 

Aneta Kocmanova Havlickova led scoring with 22 points for the Czech Republic, but it wasn’t enough to help her team to victory. Bulgaria’s Elitsa Vasileva weighed in with 19 points, while her teammates Kathryn Dimitrova and Dobriana Rabadzhieva contributed 15 points apiece. 

The hosts showed no neighbourly concern to Belgium and also enjoyed a straight sets victory, 3-0 (25-18, 25-18, 25-22) in 85 minutes. 

“This week there are no easy matches,” Bulgaria coach Ivan Dimitrov said. “The level is incredibly high and all the teams want the same thing. 

“It is too early to think about more, since first we need to win tomorrow against Greece. We need to book a quick victory, so that we save energy for the big games coming up this weekend.”

The Netherlands were inspired by Lonneke Sloetjes who led scoring with 14 points, while her teammates Nika Daalderop scored 13 and Robin De Kruijf scored 11. 

The results mean that the Netherlands sit top of the standings, with Bulgaria behind, having not lost a set while Bulgaria have lost two. 

“I’m very proud of the way my team played tonight,” Dutch coach Jamie Morrison said. “We are ready for the next matches. In the first two matches, we played with different liberos. Every match I have to make a choice between them, but they just keep making each other better.”

Slovenia sit third having won their first match of the tournament. Alessandro Chiappini’s team defeated Greece 3-0 (25-17, 25-22, 25-19) and Iza Mlakar again led scoring with 17 points, 12 of which came from winning spikes.

Visit the CEV website for the latest scores, statistics and news.


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