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VNL: Brazil finishes Pasay leg strong, fends off China in straight sets

Team Brazil celebrates after beating China. PNVF
By John Rhey Piamonte

PASAY—After a lop-sided loss against world no. 1 Poland on Friday, Brazil pulled off a statement win in its last game in the preliminary round of the Volleyball Nations League, sweeping China 25-19, 25-17, 25-17, at the Mall of Asia Arena, Saturday.

The South Americans kicked off the penultimate weekend action in a dominant fashion to secure their tickets to Krakow, Poland, finishing with an 8-4 win-loss record. 

Felipe Moreira Roque and Henrique Rodrigues anchored Brazil's net defense which pretty much dictated the pace of the game throughout. 

Opposite Roque scored his highest point total in Week 3 as he ended with 17 points, 12 attacks, four massive blocks, and one ace while middle blocker Rodrigues added 11 markers for Brazil.

With Brazil starting the game red hot, ace Jingyin Zhang responded for China and fired consecutive kills to keep the game in distance, 14-16 midway through the first set. 

But the world no. 2 Brazil ended the salvo with a strong rally enough to book the salvo in its favor.

Finding their groove in the nick of time, the tested South American's defense will, later on, contained China's 23-year-old phenom the rest of the game, limiting Zhang to his lowest scoring output in the leg, a nine-point game.

Brazil further solidifies its hope for a top-four finish in the eliminations that will play dividends in the upcoming quarterfinal stage on July 19-24 in Poland.

Follow him on Twitter: @rhey_piamonte

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