China out to level series against Italy


Lausanne, Switzerland, July 3, 2017 - Reigning Olympic champions China host Italy in Kunshan as they become on of only two teams (together with Japan) to compete in all 25 editions of the FIVB World Grand Prix. The two sides clash for the 24th time in the history of the competition, with the Europeans enjoyng a very slight 12-11 lead in the series.

• Italy have won 12 of the previous 23 World Grand Prix meetings with China.
• Italy have only beaten Japan (13) more often in the competition.
• Eight of the last 11 World Grand Prix matches between Italy and China were decided in five sets. Italy won five of those eight five-setters.
• These teams also met at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. China won in straight sets in the group stage.

• China are one of two teams ever present in the World Grand Prix, alongside Japan. They will both enter their 25th edition of the competition.
• Their sole win in the competition came in 2003. They have also claimed five second places and three third places.
• China are one of three teams to have always finished in the top-8 at the World Grand Prix, alongside Brazil and Russia.
• China won the gold medal at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro after beating Serbia in the final.

• Italy will participate in the World Grand Prix for the 19th time. They have yet to win the competition, after two silver (2004, 2005) and four bronze medals (2006, 2007, 2008, 2010).
• Only Japan (24) have participated more often in the competition without winning the title than Italy (18).
• Italy have failed to win their opening match in the last two editions of the World Grand Prix.


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