Two-time defending champions and world No. 1 USA top the table on set ratio with nine points from three wins from as many matches after their 3-0 (25-18, 25-19, 25-15) over the Dominican Republic on Sunday followed earlier 3-1 and 3-0 wins over Germany and Chinese Taipei.
“I am very happy with the way we played,” USA captain Lindsay Berg said. “It is great to start with a 3:0 win:loss record at this stage of the Grand Prix. The Dominican Republic is a strong team but we played well. The fans here know a lot about volleyball and even though they always are against us, it is also a source of motivation.”
World No. 5 China are also three from three on nine points with Sunday’s 3-1 (18-25, 25-20, 25-18, 25-19) victory over Thailand following three and four-set victories over Puerto Rico and Argentina respectively. Cuba, who are ranked 10th in the world, are third on eight points with a 3-1 (25-20, 21-25, 25-17, 25-20) win over Turkey on the back of 3-2 and 3-1 wins over Turkey and Japan while eight-time champions and world No. 2 Brazil are on six points with three other teams following three nerve-wrecking five-set victories including Sunday’s (25-15, 25-13, 23-25, 22-25, 15-10) triumph over Poland.
In Sunday’s other results, Puerto Rico beat Argentina 3-1 (25-20, 25-26, 16-25, 25-17), Japan beat Korea 3-1 (25-19, 23-25, 25-19, 25-22), Serbia beat Italy in straight-sets (25-18, 25-14, 25-23) and Germany beat Chinese Taipei 3-0 (25-11, 25-15, 25-15).
Germany, Thailand and Turkey are the other teams on six points with Brazil with two wins and a defeat.
Week Two of the 2012 FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix starts on Friday. There are a total of three Preliminary Rounds before the Finals, which will take place in Ningbo, China from June 27-July 1.