Magdalena Stysiak Poland Japan Volleyball Nations League 2024-min

Opposite Magdalena Stysiak has been a big part of Poland's offense in the VNL 2024

The only two undefeated sides in the Volleyball Nations League 2024, Poland and Brazil will lead eight women’s national teams into the last week of the tournament’s Preliminary Phase over the next six days in Hong Kong, China.

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Besides Europeans and South Americans, will also be in action in Pool 5 the national teams of Bulgaria, China, the Dominican Republic, Germany, Thailand and Türkiye. After two weeks of action in the Preliminary Phase, each of them heads to Hong Kong with specific goals in mind.

With eight victories each, Poland (24 points) and Brazil (22) are at the top of the VNL standings and are virtually guaranteed in the Finals, which will take place in Bangkok, Thailand, from June 20-23, with the seven best teams from the Preliminary Phase and the host country. With that, their main goal in Hong Kong is to finish in first place ahead of the quarterfinals.

The duel between the two, on Wednesday, will have a major influence on that, but the Poles are also set to face the Dominican Republic, Thailand and China while in Asia. The seventh-best scorer of the VNL 2024 with 128 points, opposite Magdalena Stysiak is one of the Polish weapons this week alongside libero Aleksandra Szczyglowska, who ranks second in digs with 96.

Brazil, who have star outside hitter Gabriela ‘Gabi’ Guimarães in sixth place among the scorers with 129 points and Olympic medalist Ana Carolina ‘Carol’ da Silva appearing in second place in blocks with 25, are scheduled to play against Germany, Bulgaria and Türkiye.

Also guaranteed in the Finals as the host country, Thailand will try to use the last week of the Preliminary Phase to find their rhythm ahead of the decisive round. The Asians, who are set to face Türkiye, Bulgaria, Poland and Germany in Hong Kong, are currently in 13th place in the VNL with five points (two wins).

China looking to confirm Olympic spot

Last year’s VNL finalists Türkiye and China are on their way to qualifying for the Finals and will try to get the results they need to make it happen this week. The Europeans are in fifth place with 18 points (six wins) and will count on VNL’s top scorer Melissa Vargas (187 points) to face Thailand, the Dominican Republic, China and Brazil.

The Asians are seventh with five wins (15 points) and could also use some FIVB World Ranking points to improve their current total of 327.57 and secure a spot at the Paris Olympics. The Chinese, who had the return of superstar Zhu Ting to the national team two weeks ago in Macao, will have Bulgaria, Germany, Türkiye and Poland as their opponents in Hong Kong.

Currently in 11th and 12th places respectively with six points (two wins), the Dominican Republic and Germany still hope to qualify for the Finals, but will need to be flawless this week in Hong Kong to make it happen. With just two points (one win) and sitting at the bottom of the VNL standings, Bulgaria will try to get a few more victories to improve their situation this week.

Volleyball Nations League 2024: schedule and results

The first day of action in Hong Kong, Tuesday will have two matches, with Germany facing the Dominican Republic at 17:00 local time (9:00 GMT) and Bulgaria meeting China at 20:30 local time (12:30 GMT).

The same match times will repeat on Wednesday, with Türkiye and Thailand meeting first and Brazil and Poland playing each other later.

The Japanese city of Fukuoka is also hosting a pool in the third week of the Preliminary Phase, with hosts Japan, Canada, France, Italy, Korea, the Netherlands, Serbia and the USA playing there.

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