Group 2 Remains Tight at the Top of World League (Week 3 Preview)

2017 FIVB WORLD LEAGUE – GROUP 2

  • June 2nd-June 25th, 2017
  • Schedule
  • Teams
  • Event Page

The final week of pool play will help sort out the jockeying at the top of the Group 2 table. Slovenia sits in first with 15 points with Netherlands, Slovakia and Japan all at 12. Australia is right on the cusp of the top four with 11, but as the hosts to the final four has already reserved a spot. That means one of the bunch with a dozen points (or more if a surprise team pops up) will be left out of the final four next week.

Group 2 Breakdown:

RANK TEAMS MATCHES RESULT DETAILS SETS POINTS
TOTAL WON LOST 3-0 3-1 3-2 2-3 1-3 0-3 POINTS WON LOST RATIO WON LOST RATIO
1
SLOVENIA
6 5 1 0 4 1 1 0 0 15 17 9 1.888 611 548 1.114
2
NETHERLANDS
6 4 2 2 1 1 1 1 0 12 15 9 1.666 553 507 1.090
3
SLOVAKIA
6 4 2 2 2 0 0 0 2 12 12 8 1.500 465 452 1.028
4
JAPAN
6 4 2 1 2 1 1 0 1 12 14 10 1.400 543 512 1.060
5
AUSTRALIA
6 4 2 2 1 1 0 2 0 11 14 9 1.555 535 504 1.061
6
CZECH REPUBLIC
6 3 3 1 1 1 1 1 1 9 12 12 1.000 506 537 0.942
7
TURKEY
6 3 3 1 0 2 1 2 0 8 13 13 1.000 580 570 1.017
8
KOREA
6 3 3 0 0 3 1 1 1 7 12 15 0.800 563 597 0.943
9
FINLAND
6 2 4 1 1 0 1 3 0 7 11 13 0.846 538 539 0.998
10
CHINA
6 2 4 1 1 0 1 2 1 7 10 13 0.769 510 532 0.958
11
PORTUGAL
6 1 5 0 0 1 2 1 2 4 8 17 0.470 520 573 0.907
12
EGYPT
6 1 5 0 0 1 2 0 3 4 7 17 0.411 486 539 0.901

POOL G2:

  • Venue: Kunshan Sports Centre Stadium, Kunshan, China
  • All times are China Standard Time (+8:00 UTC)
  • -12 Hours for U.S. Eastern Time
  • -5 Hours for Turkey Time
  • +2 Hours for Australian Time
  • +1 Hour for Japan Time
DATE TIME
16 Jun 15:00 Australia Japan
16 Jun 19:00 China Turkey
17 Jun 15:00 Japan Turkey
17 Jun 19:00 China Australia
18 Jun 15:00 Turkey Australia
18 Jun 19:00 China Japan

Japan sits a point ahead of Australia, but it’s actually the Japanese side who needs the victory more than the Australians since they are guaranteed a spot in the final four as the round host. Both teams are 4-2, so it should make for an exciting match.

Beyond that match opener, both China and Turkey could be elimination game. Although it would be unlikely for either team to sniff the final four, a loss makes things more certain with a win providing a sliver of hope. Both teams would need to win all three matches this week to even have a shot at the final four.

Seemingly the big match for all four squads is first, but after that Australia and Japan get chances to pick up some points against teams behind them in the standings. It will be paramount to Japan, especially if they can’t get the job done against Australia. Overall though, with two of the teams knotted up at 12 points (with Japan) in Pool I2, Japan is in a solid spot, especially if they can defeat Australia.

POOL H2:

  • Venue: Budvar Arena, Cairo, Egypt
  • All times are Eastern European Summer Time (UTC+03:00).
  • -7 hours for U.S. East Coast time
  • -2 hours for Western European Summer Time – Portugal (UTC +01:00)
  • -1 hour for Central European Summer Time – Slovenia (UTC +02:00)
  • Same time zone in Finland
DATE TIME
16 Jun 14:00 Portugal Finland
16 Jun 21:30 Egypt Slovenia
17 Jun 14:00 Finland Slovenia
17 Jun 21:30 Egypt Portugal
18 Jun 14:00 Slovenia Portugal
18 Jun 21:30 Egypt Finland

Slovenia is sitting pretty knowing that the three teams to round out the final four with Australia will likely come among them, Slovakia, Netherlands and Japan. The reason being is that Slovenia not only has a three-point edge over those nations, but Netherlands and Slovakia face-off, potentially spurning one from the final four. Slovenia is the only country with five wins thus far and just need four points (as of now) to clinch a spot in next week’s foursome.

The host of the pool sits in last – Egypt. With just four points, Egypt (although not totally mathematically eliminated) is all but done in regards to next weekend. However, they’re fighting to avoid relegation to Group 3. The opening match against Slovenia will be an uphill battle, but Portugal sits tied with them at four points while Finland is in ninth with just seven. Behind a home crowd, Egypt has a real shot to avoid relegation.

Overall though, with the top team in Group 2 joining the ninth, 11th and 12th, Slovenia should have an easy route to the pool victory and a spot in the final four.

POOL I2:

  • Venue: Sportcampus Zuiderpark, The Hague, Netherlands
  • All times are Central European Summer Time (UTC+02:00).
  • -6 hours for U.S. East Coast time
  • -2 hours for Western European Summer Time – Portugal (UTC +01:00)
  • +7 hours for Korea Standard Time – Korea (UTC +09:00)
  • Same time zone in the Czech Republic and Slovakia
DATE TIME
16 Jun 18:00 Korea Netherlands
16 Jun 20:30 Slovakia Czech Republic
17 Jun 18:00 Netherlands Slovakia
17 Jun 20:30 Czech Republic Korea
18 Jun 15:30 Korea Slovakia
18 Jun 18:00 Netherlands Czech Republic

The June 17th meeting between Netherlands and Slovakia could be the biggest match of week three in Group 2. Both teams have 12 points and with only three of the foursome that have 12 or more points able to go to the final four, the match could be paramount in who does and does not make it.

Beyond that, both teams need to take care of business to either supplement the result in that match or give themselves a chance to overcome it. Korea has seven points and sit in eighth, likely out of the discussion for the final four. The potential wild card in all of this is the Czech Republic, who sit on the outside looking in at sixth with nine points. They can potentially control their own destiny though as they sit three points back of Netherlands and Slovakia, meaning winning all three matches would help them pull off a miraculous week.

This might be the deepest of the pools in addition to having two of the top four. Every team in pool I2 has at least three wins, with no team possessing a losing record. Someone’s going to need that to change for an opponent or two if they want to make the final four from this pairing.

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