Thailand and Russia to lock horns for last spot in WGP semis


Bangkok, Thailand, July 7, 2016 - Both Thailand and Russia were shut out by Brazil in Pool J1 at the FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix 2016 Group 1 finals and Bangkok. So the match between them on Friday has become a de facto quarterfinal, since the winner will qualify for the semifinals and the loser will not.

• Russia have won all 11 World Grand Prix matches against Thailand. 
• For Russia, Thailand are the only opponents which they faced more than twice at the World Grand Prix without ever losing. 
• In the 2016 edition, they already met twice. On 18 June, Russia won in straight sets in Bari, Italy, and on 25 June, the Russian team booked a 3-1 victory in Kyoto, Japan. 
• Thailand's last victory over Russia came at the 2013 Grand Champions Cup in Japan (3-1). 

• Thailand failed to beat Brazil on Wednesday (3-0) and are now on a four-match losing streak in the World Grand Prix.
• Thailand have won the first set in a World Grand Prix match only once in their last 13 matches: against Italy on 20 June 2016 (3-2 victory).
• Ajcharaporn Kongyot scored most points for Thailand in their last match against Brazil (14).
• Kongyot is one point shy from scoring her 150th in this year's competition. She has scored 15 points from serves, joint-most of all players in Group 1 alongside Yvon Belien (NED).

• Russia started their Final Round with a 3-0 defeat to Brazil. Nataliya Goncharova (12) was the only Russian player to score at least 10 points. 
• It was only Russia's second defeat at the 2016 World Grand Prix (10 matches). They also lost to Serbia (3-2) on 24 June.
• Russia's last three Final Round matches all ended in a 3-0 scoreline. They lost 3-0 to China on 25 July 2015, beat Japan 3-0 on 26 July 2015 and now lost 3-0 to Brazil.
• Last year Russia took home the silver medal.


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