Italy look to retain undefeated record in clash with Azerbaijan


Osaka, Japan, 5 October 2018 - Italy look to extend their five-match winning streak when they face Azerbaijan, Sunday, at the 2018 FIVB World Championship. The two teams go head-to-head for only the second time in World Championship history, after a 3-1 by the Italians in the 2014 edition.

• Italy and Azerbaijan will meet for the second time at the World Championship. Their only previous encounter in the competition came in the 2014 second round, when Italy won 3-1. Azerbaijan's Polina Rahimova scored a match-high 28 points.
• These nations' only other meeting in world level major competitions came at the 2006 World Grand Prix, when Italy claimed a five-set victory.
• World level major competitions are: Nations League, Olympic Games, World Championships, World Cup, World Grand Prix and Grand Champions Cup.

• Italy (W5-L0) are one of four teams with a perfect record at the 2018 World Championship, besides Netherlands, Serbia and United States.
• Italy won four of their five matches at the 2018 World Championship in straight sets, with a 3-1 win over China as the only exception.
• Only three players scored more points in the 2018 World Championship first round than Paola Egonu (94).
• Egonu was Italy's top scorer in all their five first round fixtures at the 2018 World Championship. Egonu scored a match-high 29 points in their last match, a 3-1 win over China.
• With 62.8%, Miryam Fatime Sylla had the highest spike success rate in the 2018 World Championship first round. Serbia's Tijana Boškovic followed with 57.1%.

• Azerbaijan won two of their five matches in the 2018 World Championship first round, 3-1 against Korea and 3-0 versus Trinidad & Tobago.
• Azerbaijan are making their fourth appearance at the World Championship. They finished in ninth place on their debut in 1994, their best result in the competition.
• Only Russia's Nataliya Goncharova (119) scored more points in the first round of the 2018 World Championship than Polina Rahimova (118).
• Rahimova (118) and Jana Kulan (62) have combined for 180 of Azerbaijan's 393 points at the 2018 World Championship (46%).
• Rahimova has scored 12 aces at the 2018 World Championship, joint-most along with Mexico's Samantha Bricio.


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