Montreux, Switzerland, May 28, 2015 – Three tickets have been taken at the Montreux Volley Masters 2015 as Japan, Netherlands and Turkey claimed victories at the Pierrier Sports Hall on Thursday.
Japan crushed Germany’s dreams of a title defence with a 3-1 (25-27, 25-17, 25-20, 26-24) victory, the Netherlands downed European champions Russia 3-1 (25-20, 23-25, 25-17, 25-22), while Turkey swept the Italian youngsters 3-0 (25-17, 28-26, 25-22) to earn the semifinals berths at the 30th edition of the most prestigious invitational tournament in the world.
In the first match, reigning Montreux Volley Masters champions Germany were ready to do their best to recover from their loss to Turkey on Wednesday, but World No. 3 Japan were poised to get their second win to clinch the early ticket for the semifinals. Japan’s great defensive game was key to their two victories, which somehow rewarded them bigger as they ceased Germany’s title defence campaign.
In another big clash, the Netherlands outclassed European champions Russia in four sets. The two teams did not disappoint the high expectations of the crowd as they delighted them with long and hard-fought rallies. The Dutch team eventually fared better as their opposite spiker Lonneke Sloetjes gave them steady offence. The 22-year-old player from Schweriner SC outscored the Russian players with an impressive 21-point output to lead the Netherlands in Pool A.
Marco Bonitta’s young Italian troop were eager to do better after the setback in the opening game against Germany. The Turkish side, on the other hand, were willing to seize the opportunity to clinch the ticket for the semifinals in Pool B. Turkey scooped a clear straight-set victory over Bonitta’s team as they overpowered the Italian youngters with their aggressive attack game. Italy could not handle the pressure and committed 39 errors in the match.
As a result, three out of the four teams have been defined for the semifinals of the Montreux Volley Masters. Titleholders Germany will not be able to defend their crown as they were dropped out in the group stage.
On Friday, the action will continue as Netherlands face Dominican Republic at 16:30 local time, then Japan will try to keep a clean record against Italy at 18:30. In the last match, Russia and China are going to clash for the last ticket to the semifinals at 21:00.