Japan's players celebrate reaching the Asia U18 Championship semifinals
Lausanne, Switzerland, March 11, 2017 – Japan, Thailand, China and Korea booked their places at the FIVB Volleyball U18 World Championship by reaching the semifinals of the AVC Asia U18 Girls’ Championships on Saturday.
Japan will take on Thailand in the semifinals, while China will play Korea. No matter the results the quartet can now look forward to preparing for the U18 World Champs that take place in Argentina from August 18 to 27, 2017.
Six-time champions Japan added another three-set victory to their tally after they saw off Australia 3-0 (25-15, 25-11, 25-13). Kokomi Osaki led scoring with 12 points, six of which were ace serves.
“I wanted all 12 of my players in my team to play in this game, because it is not easy for them to gain experience in this level of the championship.” said Japan’s head coach Daichi Saegusa.
Thailand also enjoyed a straight-sets victory when they defeated Chinese Taipaei 3-0 (26-24 25-21 25-23) thanks mainly to 20 points from Piyarat Buddawong.
“I felt very excited. Our girls played very well and Chinese Taipei did their homework very well too,” said Thailand head coach Jarun Niumtuptim.
Sun Ruoqing scored 12 points for China as they reached the semifinals with a 3-0 (25-13 25-7 25-6) win against New Zealand. Korea completed the quartet when they defeated Hong Kong 3-0 (18-25, 7-25, 13-25).