Hong Kong, China, July 23, 2017 - Serbia claimed a 3-1 (25-21, 25-20, 18-25, 25-15) victory against China in their last match in Group 1 Pool G of the 2017 FIVB World Grand Prix.
Tijana Boškovic scored 22 points for the winning team with Brankica Mihajlovic contributing 20. Xinyue Yuan put 19 points on the board fot the hosts.
China took an early lead in the opening set thanks to solid blocks. Tijana Boskovic's three aces tied the set at 6-6. The teams entered a see saw situation after the first technical time-out. Serbia managed to gain better control on the momentum by adopting a diverse set of attack strategy, allowing them to take a 5-point lead into the second technical time-out. Serbia unforced serve and net touch errors gave way for China to narrow the gap to 17-18. Though China benefited from Yuan Xinyue’s quick attacks, the Chinese block could not stop the powerful Serbian spikes. Serbia took the first set by 25-21.
China opened the second set with a series of service and communication errors, allowing Serbia to take a 8-5 lead at the first technical time-out. China consolidated their blocks and serves in the middle of the set, narrowing the gap to 18-20. However, China could not stop Serbia’s super attack by Brankica Mihajlovic near the end of the set. Serbia took the second set by 25-20.
China strengthened their defense and managed to grasp attack opportunities, giving them a head start in the third set at 10-5. Serbia service put heavy pressure on the Chinese reception, narrowing the Chinese lead to 11-10. Although Serbia fought back with powerful attacks and impressive tips by Tijana Boskovic, China had better control over the net and finished the set by 25-18.
Tijana Boskovic and Brankica Mihajlovic's attacks brought Serbia to the first technical time-out by 8-4 in the fourth set. China tried to make a come back and reduced the gap to 10-12. However, Serbia’s block and attack were too strong for the Chinese team and allowed Serbia to lead by 8 points at 18-10. Although the Chinese fortified their blocks and stopped two consecutive Serbia’s attack, the visitors ended the game by 25-15.