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VakifBank performed well without top players, says Guidetti

 
Kobe, Japan, May 12, 2017 – VakifBank Istanbul coach Giovanni Guidetti utilised all his players except Zhu Ting and Lonneke Sloetjes, but still came up with a straight-set win over Hisamitsu Springs in the FIVB Volleyball Women’s Club World Championship Kobe 2017.

Guidetti clearly gave his trust in his other players to step up against a difficult opponent.

“We are a team of 14 great players,” Guidetti said. “Even without our top players today, we played well. Hisamitsu is a very good team, but we managed to beat them because they are missing their best spiker.”

VakifBank captain Gozde Kirdar was pleased with her team-mates performance against defence-driven rivals.

“We played a great game tonight,” Kirdar said. “The Japanese team has amazing defence. I’m happy our young players got the chance to play.”

Guidetti and Kirdar believe that it will be another exciting match when they meet their Turkish league rivals Eczacibasi Istanbul in the semifinals.

“Eczacibasi will be a difficult game for us,” Guidetti said. “The quality of the little things and details will decide the match.”

“We will play against Eczacibasi, a team we know very well,” Kirdar said. It will be another great game.

Meanwhile, Hisamitsu Springs coach Shingo Sakai admitted that they were not able to take advantage of the absence of Zhu Ting and Lonneke Sloetjes.

“VakifBank are a strong team,” Sakai said. “We should have created more opportunities for ourselves without Zhu and Sloetjes. We lost many points in a row at the beginning. In the second set, I substituted players earlier than normal to try and change our rhythm. Our rally skills must improve to gain points and we need to work on our combinations because we made so many mistakes in that aspect.”

Hisamitsu captain Chizuru Koto said that they lacked their usual game with precision, even when they are up against the reserves of VakifBank.

“We lacked the precision as a team that is why we couldn’t even beat their B-team,” Koto said.

Yuki Ishii was more satisfied with their performance against VakifBank instead of their two previous matches, while Rika Nomoto is honoured to play a top-level club like VakifBank.

“We played more tenaciously and united in this match than in the first two matches,” Ishii said. “We changed our reception pattern halfway through the match.”

“They are the European champions,” Nomoto said. “It is a rare opportunity to play a team like them. I wanted to see what I could do but could not follow through.”

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