By our correspondent
CHIBA, Japan: Pakistan today made a good start when they overpowered fighting Thailand 3-2 in their first Group B game of the 21st Asian Senior Men’s Volleyball Championship here at the Chiba Port Arena.
After losing the first game 22-25, the Green-shirts made a solid fightback from 9-2 down to win the set 25-23 to level the game 1-1. Thailand then rebuilt themselves and were able to win the third set 25-21 to once again put themselves 2-1 ahead. However, Pakistan, a blend of youth and experience, brought discipline in their ranks, lifting the next two sets 25-23 and 15-12 to seal a super win.
Pakistan will now tomorrow (Monday) face Hong Kong in their second game. Iran, similarly, will face Thailand in their group second round fixture also tomorrow.
Hong Kong, meanwhile, in their opener were defeated by holders Iran in straight sets 25-12, 25-18 and 25-19. India faced a 0-3 defeat at the hands of Bahrain in their Group A opener with the set scores being 27-25, 25-21, 25-21.
They will now face strong Qatar and Asia’s top team and nine-time Asian champions Japan in their remaining two outings which means its not easy for India to make it to the top-eight. In the other game of Group A strong Japan beat Qatar 3-0 with the set scores being 25-20, 25-23, 25-21.
In Group C three-time champions China beat Kuwait 3-0 while former one-time champion Australia outgunned Uzbekistan 3-0. In Group D Chinese Taipei defeated Kazakhstan 3-0 while four-time champions South Korea breezed past Saudi Arabia 3-0.