Tehran, Iran, August 6, 2015 – Qatar defeated Chinese Taipei in dramatic four sets 25-20, 25-19, 17-25, 25-22 to go up against Japan in the semi-final encounter of the 18th Asian Senior Men’s Volleyball Championship on Thursday.
Juan Cichello’s Qatar had already beaten Australia, Turkmenistan, India, and Japan and suffered one loss to China. In the previous edition in Dubai, the UAE two years ago, Qatar finished a distant 11th place. The best performance of the Qataris was in 2005 when they finished seventh. Following the win over Chinese Taipei, Qatar will next take on Japan in the Friday’s semi-finals, while Chinese Taipei were relegated to the 5th-8th classification and will first challenge Korea.
Chinese Taipei’s coach, Ke-Chou Chen: “In the first and second sets, we were not good in receiving, while our defence in the fourth set was still a far cry from our previous matches. Congratulations to Qatar. I hope my team will win our next match on Friday.”
Chinese Taipei’s captain, Chien-Chen Chen: “Our reception is not good. We performed below-standard. We did not play well in blocking. I’m so sorry for my team’s failure. I hope that my team will perform better in the remaining matches.”
Qatar’s coach, Juan Cichello: “We are thinking of the final match. We are going to have a tough job against Japan. Chinese Taipei were good on blocking and attacking. We put them under pressure in the first two sets and won both sets without much trouble, but my players took the third set easily and lost the set. The level of tension was high for both teams and we just lost our touch.”
On employing players from different nationalities: It is not in contrast with the FIVB’s rules and we can have players from different parts of the world. It also happens in the other teams. Qatar is a country with small population. Eighty per cent of the people are coming from other countries but they are Qataris and they can serve the country.”
Qatar’s captain, Ibrahim Ibrahim: “It was a good match and Chinese Taipei players did their best to the last moment. We played with confidence in the first and second sets but took the third set so easily which made us lose the set. We came back in the fourth set to win the set and the match. (on play against Japan) Japan is a strong team and a daunting task awaits us in our match against the Japanese. We have defeated them once, so they are going to play with us with more inspiration. We just need to think of the final match and fight till we win.