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Pool 13: Maar on target for Canada in victory against Japan

 

Hoffman Estates, USA, June 23, 2019 - Twenty-one points from Stephen Maar helped Canada to victory against Japan in the first match in Hoffman Estates on Sunday. It was Canada's third win of the weekend.

Canada-Japan
USA-China

Pre-match stats:

Canada - Japan (June 23, 2019) 

Head-to-Head
- Canada and Japan are in perfect balance in meetings at world level major competitions with seven victories each.
- World level major competitions are: FIVB Volleyball Nations League, Olympic Games, World Championship, World Cup, World League and Grand Champions Cup.
- Canada won three of their last four world level matches against Japan, with the exception in this run their 3-0 defeat at the 2015 World Cup.
- Last year these teams also met in the VNL, with Canada beating Japan in straight-sets in the preliminary round.

Canada
- Canada have won six and lost five Volleyball Nations League matches in 2019. They won eight matches in the 2018 VNL.
- Canada could win three VNL matches in a row for the second time in 2019, after beating Portugal, Argentina, Australia and Germany successively in May-June.
- Canada have won each of their last 13 world level major tournament matches in which they claimed the first set. Their last VNL defeat after a 1-0 lead in sets came on 10 June 2018 against United States.
- Sharone Vernon-Evans (159 points) is in second place on this year's top scorers in the competition, behind only Iran's Amir Ghafour (183). Last year, only Stephen Timothy Maar (165) scored more for Canada at the VNL than Vernon-Evans (159) this year.
- Grahm Vigrass has scored 21 points from stuff blocks, only one fewer than Seyed Mohammad Mousavi Eraghi (IRAN), Svetoslav Gotsev (BUL) and Petar Krsmanovic (SRB) who lead the VNL on 22 stufff blocks.
- Brett James Walsh (4.40) is one of a select group of setters averaging more than four per set.

Japan
- Japan have won five and lost six Volleyball Nations League matches in 2019.
- With their five wins, Japan are one shy of their number of wins in the 2018 VNL (6).
- Japan's 3-0 victory over China was their second win in straight sets in the VNL, and their second in this year's tournament.
- Yuji Nishida (140) and Yuki Ishikawa (136) are in the top eight on this year's VNL best scorer's list. Both scored a team-leading 16 points against China on Saturday.
- Last year, Nishida also led Japan's charge by totalling 187 points in the preliminary round.
- Yuji Nishida is the second-best server in the 2019, averaging 0.37 aces per set. Also his total number of aces (15) ranks second, behind only Russia's Egor Kliuka (20).

United States - China (June 23, 2019) 

Head-to-Head 
- United States beat China in 17 of their 20 previous meetings at world level major tournaments.
- World level major competitions are: FIVB Volleyball Nations League, Olympic Games, World Championship, World Cup, World League and Grand Champions Cup.
- Eleven of USA's 17 victories over China were straight-sets wins, including in their most recent meeting during last year's VNL tournament.
- China's three victories over USA came at the 1966 World Championship (3-2), the 1992 World League (3-2) and the 2009 World League (3-2). 

United States
- United States lost against Canada on Saturday, ending a five-match winning streak in Volleyball Nations League matches.
- A defeat versus China would be United States's sixth two-match losing run in the VNL. They have never recorded a longer streak of losses in the competition.
- On 94 points, Benjamin Patch is USA's top scorer this VNL campaign. Torey Defalco follows with 92 total points.
- Last year, Benjamin Patch totalled 101 points in the preliminary round, ranking him third for USA behind Matthew Anderson (166) and Aaron Russell (128).
- David Smith is among the top 10 of best blockers (avg 0.43) and best servers (avg 0.29) in this year's VNL.

China
- China have won only one of their first 11 matches in the 2019 Volleyball Nations League, a 3-0 win over Bulgaria.
- China had a W3-L12 record in the 2018 preliminary round. Only Republic of Korea (W1-L14) had a worse record in 2018.
- Zhejia Zhang has the second average as best blocker in the competition, averaging 0.51 stuff blocks per set. Only Iran's Seyed Mohammad Mousavi Eraghi has a higher average of 0.55.
- Guojun Zhan is the third-best setter in the competition (4.81 set average per set), behind only Iran's Mir Saied Marouflakrani (9.10) and Italy's Simone Giannelli (8.18).
- Chuan Jiang (117) is the only Chinese player on more than 100 points in the 2019 VNL. He led China in scoring in the 2018 VNL with 274 points.

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