Bohai Bank Tianjin (CHN) (TBB) vs. Eczacibasi Dynavit Istanbul (TUR) (ECZ) women - Pool A #8678937

Eczacibasi’s Jovana Stevanovic spikes against Tianjin

The two Turkish powerhouses from Istanbul, Eczacibasi Dynavit and VakifBank Spor Kulubu topped the two pools at the 2023 FIVB Volleyball Women’s Club World Championship in China without losing a single set along the way and will meet the runners-up of the other pools, Brazil’s Dentil Praia Clube of Uberlandia and tournament hosts Tianjin Bohai Bank, respectively, in Saturday’s crossed semifinals. Eczacibasi and Dentil Praia will take to the court first, at 14:00 local time (06:00 UTC). Then VakifBank and Tianjin will lock horns at 19:30 (11:30).

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Pool A

In the last Pool A game on Friday, a direct duel for the top of the final pool standings, Eczacibasi Dynavit Istanbul mastered a convincing shutout of Tianjin Bohai Bank, dominating in all scoring elements, but also committing more unforced errors (18 against nine).

The first set was quite one-sided and the Turkish side took it by a wide margin. The second set was the most competitive of the three, with the lead changing hands several times. After 23-22 Tianjin’s way, however, two consecutive spike kills by Serbian opposite and captain Tijana Boskovic reversed the score and then a net touch fault by the home team handed Eczacibasi the set win. The third set was once again well in control of the Istanbul squad. In the money time, sub-in middle blocker Beyza Arici put away two aces in a row to bring in match point at 24-18. Tianjin denied it once, but then a successful swing by Serbian middle Jovana Stevanovic put an end to the match.

Boskovic was once again Eczacibasi’s leading scorer. She delivered a match-high 22 points, including two aces and two kill blocks, towards the victory. Russian outside hitter Irina Voronkova added another 11 points for the team. Outsides Li Yingying and Wang Yizhu were Tianjin’s most productive scorers with 12 points each.

Pool B

Earlier on Friday, VakifBank Spor Kulubu showed no mercy for Dentil Praia Clube and hammered out a sweep of the last Pool B match in Hangzhou, completely outplaying the opponent in all scoring elements, but most impressively on the block (13-2 in stuffs).

VakifBank Spor Kulubu (TUR) (VKF) vs. Dentil Praia Clube (BRA) (DTI) women - Pool B #8679039

Gabi and Chiaka Ogbogu on the block against Tainara

The game started a little better for the Brazilian team and they took an early three-point lead. Once VakifBank gained an 8-7 advantage, they never allowed the opponents to step in front for the rest of the match. American opposite Jordan Thompson aced to bring in the first match point at 24-18 in set three. A couple of unforced errors later, the game was over.

Thompson had two aces and two kill blocks in the match and her total tally of 18 points put her on top of the scorers’ chart. Brazilian outside and captain Gabriela Guimaraes raised three kill blocks and also reached the double digits on a total of 11 points. Dentil Praia’s opposite Tainara Santos finished with 17 points, including two aces.