MANILA, Philippines — France made quick work of the Netherlands, 25-14, 25-23, 25-13, to make a rousing Quezon City debut in the Volleyball Nations League (VNL) on Thursday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Stephen Boyer led the balanced attack of the French Spikers with 15 points built on 11 attacks and four blocks. Middle Blocker Barthelemy Chinenyeze contributed 12 points off 10 spikes, highlighted with the kill that gave their team a two-set advantage that gave the Tokyo Olympics gold medalists a 2-0 set lead.
Trevor Clevenot was also instrumental with 11 points, while Nicolas Le Goff added 10 after providing six of France’s 12 kill blocks in the game.
“In the second set, we just found a way to come back and win the set,” said Boyer. “It’s always good to win. We played good volleyball.”
France earned its fifth win in six games including the forfeiture of Wednesday’s match against China due to health and safety protocols
Earvin Ngapeth, the Tokyo Games MVP, enjoyed his first game in front of the Filipino fans, promising a good performance in their last two games in the Quezon City leg.
“I received a lot of messages from Filipino people. It’s so cool to be here to play volleyball here,” said Ngapeth, who chipped in eight points, five receptions, and four digs. “I hope we will make two good games for the fans. This is for the fans here in the Philippines.”
France will play Japan on Saturday and Germany on Sunday.
The Netherlands absorbed its third defeat in six matches with Bennie Tuinstra and captain Nimir Abdel-Aziz carrying the loads with 11 points each.
The Dutch gave up 18 errors only had one kill block in the game as the French nailed 41 spikes against the former’s 30 attacks.
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