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Two-time gold medallist and Olympic final rookie to determine Rio 2016 champ

 
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 19, 2016 - The much anticipated final of the women’s volleyball tournament at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games is coming up on Saturday.  The Olympic court at the Maracanazinho will welcome the national teams of Serbia and China, who will determine the 2016 Olympic champion.


Before this Olympic Games, the head-to-head record between these two teams was at equilibrium with five wins each. In their Pool B encounter here, in Brazil, the Serbs shut out the Chinese by 3-0 (25-19, 25-19, 25-10) to take the advantage before their crucial 12th meeting.

The two teams also met at London 2012. On July 28 of that year, it was the Asian side that claimed a 3-1 (16-25, 25-18, 25-13, 25-12) victory over their European opponents.

Outside the Olympic Games, the last official match between China and Serbia took place on June 18 of this year in Macau. In this FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix 2016 game, the Chinese managed a thrilling 3-2 (27-25, 17-25, 20-25, 25-22, 15-9) win.

For China, the Olympic medal from Rio will be their sixth, after winning gold at Los Angeles 1984 and Athens 2004, silver at Atlanta 1996 and bronze at Seoul 1988 and Beijing 2008. The Asian powerhouse sneaked through the pool stage by finishing fourth in their Pool B. In the quarterfinals, they upset hosts Brazil after a tie-breaker fifth set, and in the semis, they beat the Netherlands by 3-1.

China’s Zhu Ting leads the Best Scorers chart of the competition with 154 points so far, as well as the Best Spikers ranking with a 42.86% efficiency rate in offence.

Serbia had never made the Olympic semifinals before and, at Rio 2016, they have already secured a historic first medal. They qualified for the gold medal match after finishing third in Pool B, shutting out Russia in the quarterfinals and squeezing out a five-set victory over USA in the semifinals.

Their best scorer so far, Tijana Boskovic, is third in the tournament ranking with 114 points.

Serbia’s Milena Rasic is number 1 in the Best Blockers ranking with an average of 0.85 kill blocks per set and in the Best Servers chart with 0.54 aces per set. Her teammate Tijana Boskovic is second in that table with an average of 0.35 aces per set.

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