VakifBank Istanbul and Volero Zurich guaranteed their spots in the FIVB Volleyball Women’s Club World Championship Kobe 2017 semifinals following their stunning victories at Green Arena Kobe on Wednesday.
The two European clubs relied on the superb offence of their stars to lead in their respective pools, as VakifBank defeated Rexona-SESC Rio 3-1 (25-17, 25-15, 20-25, 25-15) in Pool A, while Volero Zurich overpowered NEC Red Rockets 3-0 (25-23, 25-17, 26-24) in Pool B.
Zhu Ting and Kim Hill scored 18 points apiece to lead the Turkish club, then got more support on offence and defence from Lonneke Sloetjes and Milena Rasic.
Kenia Carcaces Opon top scored with 18 markers for Volero Zurich, but Olesia Rykhliuk also had a big point contribution with 17 points.
Meanwhile, Eczacibasi broke into the win-column, following their 3-1 (25-21, 20-25, 25-16, 25-13) win over Sao Paulo-based club Osasco Voleibol Clube. The defending champions made a great comeback in the tournament after their straight-set loss to Volero Zurich on Tuesday, giving them an opportunity to earn the last semifinal spot in Pool B.
In the other Pool A match-up, Dinamo Moscow outplayed host club Hisamitsu Springs 3-0 (25-9, 25-19, 25-20), keeping the former’s hopes up in securing a spot in the final four.
However, they have to go through a tough decider against Rexona-SESC Rio at 9:40 local time on Friday, May 12.
Volero Zurich will try to extend their winning streak when they meet Osasco Voleibol Clube at 12:10, followed by the match-up between Eczacibasi and NEC Red Rockets at 14:40. The final match in pool play will feature Vakifbank and Hisamitsu Springs at 18:10.