Turkey women’s national volleyball team’s FIVB Nations League campaign suffered a setback Wednesday after losing 3-1 to host Brazil.
The Sultans of the Net made a great start to the match, winning the first set 25-19. However, Brazil made great use of the home-court advantage to fight back and secure the 3-1 (19-25, 25-23, 25-23, 25-23) victory at the Nilson Nelson stadium, in the capital Brasilia.
Recently confirmed as the team captain for the 2022 season, the 28-year-old Gabi was instrumental in the Brazilian victory. After a slow first set, the star outside hitter came back in great style, ending the match with a team-high 20 points (16 kills, two aces, two blocks).
“I’m happy to be back with the team, especially playing at home,” she said at the end of the match. “We knew it was going to be a difficult match today. We didn’t start so well and I was making a lot of mistakes and couldn’t help the team the way I wanted.”
“I’m glad that we were able to make some changes and improve our blocking and defense, which allowed us to control the match a little bit better. Of course, there’s still a lot for us to improve, but I’m proud of the team for fighting until the end. The players who came off the bench helped a lot too and that’s the spirit we need,” she told the Volleyball World official website.
The top scorer of the match was Turkish star Ebrar Karakurt, who registered at least 20 points for a fifth-straight match, producing 21 with 19 kills, one block and one ace.
Middle blockers Eda Erdem and Zehra Güneş and outside hitter Tuğba Şenoğlu contributed with 10 points each.
Turkey will be back in action against Serbia on Saturday, before facing Germany in the early hours of Sunday and playing against South Korea later the same night to complete its FIVB Nations League second-week matches.