• Kyodo


Simona Rinieri scored a team-high 20 points as Italy came from one set down to defeat host Japan 3-1 at a women’s World Grand Prix volleyball meet on Friday.

Japan took control by winning the first set 25-18 but the Italians overpowered their opponents 25-20, 25-20, 25-19 in the next three frames to claim victory at Todoroki Arena.

Japan and Italy are grouped in pool C for the competition featuring 12 teams and will also face each other in the first round at next month’s Athens Olympics. Kana Oyama had a game-high 22 points for Japan, which will make its first Olympic appearance in eight years in Athens.

Meanwhile, Russia, runnerup at last year’s World Grand Prix finals, thumped Poland 3-0.

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