Gutsy Thais bring down tall Aussies
() - March 31, 2001 - 12:00am
What it lacked in height and power, Thailand I made up with its speed and agility as it stunned top seed Australia I, 18-21, 21-17, 15-7, yesterday at the start of the second Nestea Beach Volleyball Asian Women’s Championship at the CCP Complex.

Rebounding impressively from an opening set loss with fine defensive stops against their fancied taller rivals, Rattanaporn Arlaisuk and Manatsanan Pangka took the next set then dominated Summer Lochowicz and Kylie Gerlic in the decider to complete the victory.

Lochowicz, who led Australia to a second-place finish here last year, and Gerlic opened their bid with a superb display of power and even seized a 14-11 lead in the second until fortunes shifted to the gutsy Thai pair.

Covering the court with remarkable resolve, Arlaisuk and Pangka overcame their rivals’ smashes with near-perfect receptions as they won 10 of the last 13 points in the second set to force the decider.

They sustained that momentum in the third frame as Arlaisuk and Pangka pounced on the Aussies, whose bid simply fizzled out in the end.

The Thais’ second team of Kamoltip Kulna and Jarunee Sarnnork, however, dropped a 21-18, 24-22 decision to Japan I’s tandem of Tenuko Nakano and Kaori Taschiya in the other contest.

China II, composed of You Wenhui and Pan Wangye, trounced Noriko Nakamura and Tomoko Ukigaya of Japan II, 21-19, 21-14.

Meantime, all three teams fielded in by host Philippines lost their respective matches, including a 10-21, 11-21 setback by RP I to Thailand II.

Philippine Navy’s Helen Dosdos and Johanna Botor, who topped the recently-concluded first Nestea Beach Volleyball National Open, was overwhelmed by the tandem of Kulna and Sarnnork, conceding the match in just over 16 minutes. — Joey Villar

ARLAISUK AND PANGKA AUSTRALIA I HELEN DOSDOS AND JOHANNA BOTOR JAPAN I JOEY VILLAR KAMOLTIP KULNA AND JARUNEE SARNNORK KULNA AND SARNNORK NESTEA BEACH VOLLEYBALL ASIAN WOMEN
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