Poprad, Slovakia, June 3, 2017 - Portugal defeated Japan in their second tiebreaker in pool B2. Despite Japan’s lead in the fourth set, Portugal made a come-back to gain first win this weekend. Marco Ferreira was a main scorer in his team, helping Portugal with a 3-2 (25-21, 19-25, 21-25, 26-24, 15-9).
Marco Ferreira scored 21 points, followed by yesterday’s best scorer on team Portugal Alexandre Ferreira, who scored this time 18 points. On the other side of the net Issei Otake brought 26 point for Japan.
The first rally brought bad news to Portugal when middle blocker Marcel Keller Gil injured his ankle and must have been taken out of the court. Despite that Portugal started better and led 11-8 when captain Alex Ferreira hit the ace. Japanese players had trouble in attack, Portugal blocked very well and lead 15-10 after nice action by Marco Ferreira. But then Japan improved service and closed the score to 18-20. Portugal managed end of the set and won 25-21.
Japan started better in the second set. They pushed Portugal by good service, improved their attack with second setter Naonobu Fujii and Asian team lead 13-8. Japan played consistently in side-out and forced Portugal to make errors. Japan build their lead to 23-16 when Hiroaki Asano ended the rally with great spike. Japan won the second set 25-19.
Third set was levelled at the start and both teams collected point by point. Then Portugal made few points in a row and Marco Ferreira put his team in a lead 16-12. But Japanese players fought back and closed the score to 16-17. Then Issei Otake hit the ace and levelled the score to 18. Japan was on the board and turned it 23-19 in their favour. Great service by Yanagida and fantastic digs caused this. The team mentored by Phillipe Blain won the third set 25-21.
Japan lead 4-1 in the fourth set, but Portugal bettered the defence at the net and turned the score to 8-7. Later lead Japan 18-16, but Filip Cveticanin made nice block and Portugal turned the score to 20-19. When Masashi Kuriyama made first block for his team in the game, Japan lead 22-21. Japan had match point at the end, but opposite Valdir Sequeira hit two aces in a row and Portugal won fourth set 26-24.
Portugal started better in tie-break and Marco Ferreira put his team to lead 4-1 with great block. Portugal finally won the fifth set 15-9 and collected first win in this year´s World League.Matches on Sunday