The Australian men’s volleyball team has scrapped their way to a fourth consecutive FIVB World League win, beating Asian rivals Japan 3-2 in Kunshing, China.
The win is a further boost for the confidence of the helloworld Volleyroos, who suffered a surprise 3-1 loss to Japan in Slovakia two weeks ago.
It also elevates the Volleyroos to third place on the overall Group Two standings, behind The Netherlands and Slovenia with two games to play.
Australian captain once again led the way on Friday with 27 points, with Luke Smith finishing with 22 in the team’s 29-27, 18-25, 24-26, 25-21, 15-9 win.
“We are happy to win, but this is not a perfect game for both sides,” Carroll said.
“I think both sides wanted to win but lost many chances. We had a young setter today, this is his first time to start the game.
“We are happy about the performance in the fourth and fifth sets. Now we are looking forward to the game against China tomorrow.”
Along with Arshdeep Dosanjh starting his first match, coach Mark Lebedew also gave valuable game time to Trent O’Dea, and was impressed by the performance of both.
He said the turning point in the match came when the team took a different approach to Japan’s major point scorer.
“The biggest things were changing our block a little against the opposite, playing more first tempo and never dropping our bundles,” Lebedew said.
“This was not a perfect game. I think last week we played better than today.
“But it is important that when we played not well, we kept fighting. We are fighting every chance to win. For this game, mentality is better than the quality.”
The Volleyroos take on China on Saturday afternoon, looking to build on their 3-0 win last weekend over the same team, and to retain the Hancock Prospecting Cup.
The Australians wrap up their World League preliminary campaign against Turkey on Sunday, before returning to the Gold Coast to host the Group Two semi-finals next weekend.