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27/08/2017 22:09
Oranjes complete clean sweep of their matches at World Champs qualifier on home soil
2018 FIVB Volleyball World Championship - Women

Rotterdam, Netherlands, August 27, 2017. On the final day of the third-round European qualifier for the 2018 FIVB Women’s Volleyball World Championship, it was all about the honour. The Netherlands and Bulgaria played each other for first place in the final standing, with both teams already qualified for next year’s World Champs. The Dutch team stayed unbeaten after rallying to another 3-0 (25-21, 25-17, 25-23) victory, thus finishing the tournament without losing a set.

The game was a close one only in the third set. Bulgaria were more successful with their block and their defence was much better too. However, with the support of 4,000 spectators, the hosts made the difference scoring the big points and they eventually won the third set 25-23. A big celebration followed suit after completing such a great team effort.

Dutch coach Jamie Morrison said his team was eager to win all the games in Rotterdam for the enthusiastic home crowd. He was extremely proud that they did it in style. “We won every match with 3-0 and it was a great week for us. We worked extremely hard this summer with the team and the staff and it paid off. This team is amazing and we want to achieve more. We will now have a few days off and then we will prepare for the European Championship.”

Dutch team captain Maret Balkestein-Grothues looked back at the World Championship qualifier with much pride: “Our mission is accomplished. It feels so good after a bad start with the national team back in June. We showed that we really belong to the World Champs and we did it in style. That makes me obviously proud. We wanted to win all the matches here and we did it. We were the boss in our house.”

The Bulgarians had mixed feelings after losing their last match in Rotterdam. Bulgarian coach Ivan Dimitrov: “The big difference was that we made 22 big faults. Holland is a great team, and I have to congratulate them. They had a strong serve, and we could not cope with the pressure. However, we are going to the World Champs next year, so I am proud of my team. We obviously do not like losing and hoped to do better against The Netherlands.”

Belgium was really disappointed Saturday after losing from Bulgaria and as a result, they lost a chance to qualify for the World Championship as well. On Sunday, they managed to set that feeling aside and played really well against Greece, eventually producing a 3-0 (25-14, 25-17, 25-12) victory. Middle blocker Laura Heyrman was the best scorer of the match with 12 points. Greece lost all of their matches in Rotterdam this week.

The final match at the Topsportcenter in Rotterdam between Slovenia and the Czech Republic was a nice one for the spectators to watch with many long rallies and spectacular actions. The Czechs made the difference with good serving and a solid side-out to finish their campaign in style (3-0; 25-17, 25-15, 25-20).

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News nr. 1 of 22
26/08/2017 23:28:00
The Netherlands and Bulgaria complete European contingent for 2018 women’s Worlds

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