Compared to his debut with Serbia, Italy started with Malinov at the helm, Degradi and Guerra as shooters, Danesi and Chirichella central, Nwakalor on the contrary and De Gennaro free. The Blues took a few exchanges to pick up pace while the Dominican Republic found an offensive reference to Brayelin Martinez. Danesi first and then Malinov, however, have kept the blues well in the wake, advancing towards the advance signed by Degradi and two consecutive errors from rivals (12-9). The blue attack suffered some empty passes while on the other side of the net González López and Brayelin Martínez (14-15) picked up the pace. Italy struggled a lot to find points with Nwakalor and Guerra while the Dominicans continued to defend and block well going to the scoreboard with an unstoppable Martinez (18-18). Once the right measures were taken, and after suffering a last attempt at a Dominican comeback (23-23), the blues managed to lead the first set with two decisive plays by Nwakalor (25-23).
The party’s argument did not change when the game resumed: the Dominican Republic continued to find good defenses and precise attacks with Martinez and Pena. Then, when Mars also began to sting service and subnetwork, Italy found itself with less than 5-9. In the moment of difficulty the blues got answers from Degradi (hands out, blocking and ace) to correct the difference despite the good plays on the opposite side of Pena and González López (9-10). Italy, however, did not continue to force, allowing too many errors in attack and reception. González López, Martínez and Pena started to pick up the pace and Italy, despite some good plays from Chirichella, Guerra and Nwakalor, found themselves under 13-22. The entries in the field of Bonifacio, Lubian and Bosio reversed the trend (5-0 break for the blues) but could not complete the comeback with the Dominicans who then closed the second set with a block from Mambru (20-25) . In the third set coach Mazzanti gave confidence to Bosio and Bonifacio getting good responses in attack also from Guerra and Nwakalor (8-6). The Dominicans continued to prolong each exchange with great defenses but Italy with a cash Nwakalor and a solid Chircihella took off (18-11) frustrating the plays of the Dominican central Geraldine González. The blues were no longer surprised (last flashes of Domínguez, Pena and Peralta) closing the accounts with the attack in the center of Bonifacio (25-19).
The start of the fourth set was Dominican: Jinery, Geraldine and Brayelin Martinez pushed the Dominican Republic 7-10. In the 7-11, coach Mazzanti played Egonu’s card, which was initially kept at rest, but the contribution of the blue opponent (immediately 1 winning attack) was not enough to keep pace with the savages Martínez and Pena who managed lead the game in the tiebreaker (16-25).
In the fifth set Paola Egonu unleashed: the blue opponent scored 3 points to pick up the pace (7-4), scratching the convictions of the Dominicans. Egonu with Bosetti and Bonifacio put the decisive break (13-8) that allowed the girls of coach Davide Mazzanti to close the game (15-12).
THE MAIN CHARACTERS-
Davide Mazzanti (Italy coach) – « In many things we fought, we chose the wrong attacking shots and we carried that throughout the match. Then they defended a lot in a game made of many counterattacks with their strikers who did great things while we fought with high ball and made decisions that were not always good. The victory, however, was crucial because we are back from the Ankara Pool where we have achieved two successes and in terms of the Final it is important to get a result. It has certainly been a painful victory, surely we still lack the pace of play because we have struggled to stay in the game. We have to recover because we play early and we have to be ready for Germany. It doesn’t matter who the opponent is but how we approach the game because now it is essential to know how to manage the mental and physical energies “.
Anastasia Guerra (Italy) – « It was important to take home the result – said the azzurri picker – at the moment we lack the pace of the race and the fusion. We play again tomorrow and that may be a good thing even though there is a lot to do in the coming days to improve our game. The Dominicans did well on defense and then were very good on the offensive options. We, on the other hand, were ineffective but I repeat, in a match like this, the important thing is to have brought the result. Now we have to restart immediately, rest well and then get close to the next game with Germany.
Sara Bonifacio (Italy) – « The Dominican Republic played very well making the game very hard, we fought in attack and that gave morale to our rivals who were doing very well. Then we settled down to find the rhythm in attack and then we managed to reach the top of a game that put us in a very serious difficulty. We all want to play and make our contribution in a very tight competition like the VNL. There is Germany tomorrow and we will have to rest well and restart to face Germany in the best possible way. “
ITALY – DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 3-2 (25-23; 20-25; 25-19; 16-25; 15-12)
ITALY: Guerra 18, Chirichella 6, Malinov 3, Degradi 10, Danesi 3, Nwakalor 10, De Gennaro (Libero), Lubian, Bonifacio 9, Bosio, Fersino, Bosetti 4, Egonu 8. NE: Sylla. Ramats Mazzanti
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Pena 19, Gonzalez G. 7, Gonzalez Lopez 16, Martinez J. 11, Martinez B. 16, Mars 3, Martinez Y. (Libero), Peralta 3, Dominguez, Mambru 1, Guillen. NE: Rabit, Hinojosa and Martínez L. Tots Kwiek
REFEREES: Ivanov Ivaylo (Bul) and Rene Karina Noemi (Arg)
Length: 30 ‘, 33’, 26 ‘, 24’,
Italy: a 2, bs 12, m 13, et 14.
Dominican Republic: a 4, bs 16, m 9, et 12.
RESULTS POOL 3 – BRAZIL (BRAZIL) –
Netherlands – Germany 1-3 (20-25; 19-25; 25-12; 22-25)
Italy 3-1 Serbia (21-25; 25-14; 25-15; 25-20)
Dominican Republic – South Korea 3-0 (25-21; 25-17; 25-13)
Brazil 3-1 Turkey (19-25; 25-23; 25-23; 25-23)
Serbia – South Korea 3-0 (40-38; 25-22; 25-22)
Italy – Dominican Republic 3-2 (25-23; 20-25; 25-19; 16-25; 15-12)
Netherlands – Brazil (to play)
RESULTS POOL 4 – QUEZON CITY (PHILIPPINES) –
Canada – Thailand 0-3 (19-25; 22-25; 24-26)
Japan 3-0 Poland (25-21; 25-21; 25-21)
Bulgaria – USA 0-3 (20-25; 22-25; 20-25)
China 3-0 Belgium (25-19; 25-22; 25-14)
Poland – Thailand 3-2 (22-25; 27-29; 25-16; 25-16; 15-13)
Canada – Belgium 3-1 (25-22; 25-21; 22-25; 25-22)
Bulgaria – Japan 0-3 (20-25; 16-25; 23-25)
THE COMPLETE POOL CALENDAR 3-
Week 2 (Brasilia, Brazil)
June 16: Serbia – South Korea at 8 p.m.
June 16: Italy-Rep. Dominican at 23.00 (live Sky Sport 1 and streaming NOW)
June 17: Holland – Brazil at 02:00
June 17: Germany – Italy at 20:00 (Sky Sport 1 live and streaming NOW)
June 17: Serbia – Turkey at 11 p.m.
June 18: Holland – Dominican Republic at 2 p.m.
June 18: Italy – Brazil at 20:00 (Sky Sport 1 live and streaming NOW)
June 18: Germany – Turkey at 11 p.m.
June 19: Holland – South Korea at 2 p.m.
June 19: Brazil – Serbia at 3 p.m.
June 19: Germany – Dominican Republic 6 p.m.
* Italian timetables
THE COMPLETE POOL CALENDAR 4-
Week 2 (Quezon City, Philippines)
June 16: Poland – Thailand at 5 p.m.
June 16: Canada – Belgium at 9:00 am
June 16: Bulgaria – Japan at 1:00 p.m.
June 17: Poland – USA at 5:00 p.m.
June 17: China-Canada at 9 p.m.
June 17: Japan – Thailand at 1:00 p.m.
June 18: Bulgaria – Canada at 5:00 p.m.
June 18: Belgium – Poland at 09:00
June 18: USA – China at 1:00 p.m.
June 19: Bulgaria – Belgium at 5 p.m.
June 19: Thailand – USA at 9 p.m.
June 19: Japan – China at 1:00 p.m.
* Italian timetables
THE PROVISIONAL CLASSIFICATION-
Japan 6 wins (17 pt), China 4 wins (13 pt), USA 4 wins (12 pt), Brazil 4 wins (12 pt), Serbia 4 wins (12 pt), Thailand 4 wins (11 pt), Italy 4 wins (11 pts)Poland 4 wins (10 pt), Turkey 3 wins (9 pt), Canada 3 wins (9 pt), Germany 2 wins (8 pt) Dominican Republic 1 win (4 pt), Belgium 1 win (2 pt), Bulgaria 1 victory (2 pt), Netherlands 0 victories (2 pt), South Korea 0 victories (0 pt).