France eyes to recover from collapse vs Japan

Ralph Edwin Villanueva - Philstar.com
France eyes to recover from collapse vs Japan
Team France
STAR / Russell Palma

MANILA, Philippines -- Following a collapse against a heavily favored Japan side, France’s Benjamin Toniutti stressed that the team should “improve their quality” for a longer time.

France on Saturday evening won the first two sets against Japan – 25-17, 25-19 – before dropping the final three sets to absorb the loss.

As a result, the French dropped to sixth with a 6-5 win-loss record.

“I think it was a nice game. We cannot close the game because they played better from the [final] sets and we started to struggle a bit and then they had the rhythm with the defense,” the team skipper said in the postgame interview.

“We had to think in the way that we would play a really good game for [beyond] two sets and we have to improve our quality for a longer time,” he added.

Japan’s Yuki Ishikawa exploded for 33 points in the match as he paced the comeback.

Kento Miyaura added 19 markers.

The French were led by Jean Patry with 21 points, while Trevor Clevenot had 15.

Toniutti also lauded the big performance of Ishikawa.

“Today Ishikawa was amazing, he’s an amazing player, we knew it. Today, he played a really good game, it was very difficult to close him.”

France will be facing Brazil in its final match of the Manila leg on Sunday at 3 p.m.

“We expect a tough game against a strong team.”

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