Olympic rookies Puerto Rico face yet another powerful opponent


Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 10, 2016 - The third competition day of the women’s volleyball tournament at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games will start with a Pool B clash between China and Puerto Rico.

After losing to the Netherlands on the first day, the Chinese got back on track on Monday with a 3-0 (25-21, 25-21, 25-16) shutout of another European representative, Italy. Zhu Ting and Yunli Xu contributed 12 points each to that victory, which puts the Asian team in the third position in the current Pool B standings, following unbeaten Serbia and USA.

“Every match is important for us and we will try to do our best for the rest of the tournament,” said China’s captain Hui Ruoqi, looking forward towards the game with Puerto Rico.

The Caribbean squad has yet to earn its first victory in the tournament and even win its first set. Following the straight-set loss to USA, the Puerto Ricans were shut out by Serbia as well – 0-3 (27-29, 18-25, 20-25), and, together with Italy, are the only two winless teams remaining in the pool. Karina Ocasio scored 16 times against the southern European team, including two winning blocks and two aces.

Both Ocasio and her coach Juan Carlos Cruz admitted that the Puerto Rican team committed excessive unforced errors. Reducing the number of mistakes is what they are going to try to do in the matches ahead in search for better results.

The last time China and Puerto Rico met at a major international competition was at FIVB Volleyball World Championship Italy 2014. On September 23 of that year, in Bari, the Asian giant mastered a straight-set 3-0 (25-23, 25-18, 25-20) victory over the team from the small Caribbean island.


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