Belgrade, Serbia, May 23, 2019 — Turkey remained at the top of the table at the end of the first week of the 2019 FIVB Women’s Volleyball Nations League with a 3-0 (25-19, 25-23, 25-20) sweep of reigning Serbian world champions Thursday night.
This being a Balkan derby with a historic rivarly between the two sides, it was about bragging rights as much as it was about the points earned-though those will be very handy as Turkey seeks to enter the Final Six for the second year running after finishing runners-up to the USA in the 2018 VNL.
In a vain attempt to finish the opening week undefeated, Coach Zoran Terzic brought some of his top guns to the game.
The MVP of the 2018 FIVB World Championship Tijana Boskovic was one of those -and indeed she did top score for Serbia with 15 points, but that proved hardly a match for the opposite side’s Ebrar Karakurt who hauled a match-high 20 (including 4 aces). In fact, in the third set, Boskovic had to be subjected to performing under par.
Turkey showed much more passion for the court and blanked the bulk of Serbia’s attacking efforts, either on the net or with some of its fiery digging, limiting the home team to an efficiency of 36 percent (34/93) compared to 45 percent (42/93).
It was Turkey’s third win so far in the VNL after victories over Korea and the Netherlands in as many matches. Serbia has now dropped to 2-1, beating the same opponents already.