Mammadova led Altay Volleyball Club to its first win in the 2018 FIVB Volleyball Women's Club World Championship
Shaoxing, China, December 8, 2018 – Natalya Mammadova led Altay Volleyball Club to their first victory in the 2018 FIVB Volleyball Women's Club World Championship, following a 3-2 (25-14, 18-25, 25-23, 23-25, 15-9) win over Zhejiang Women's Volleyball Club on Saturday.
Mammadova finished the match with 22 spikes, a block and an ace to lead all scorers. Sana Anarkulova contributed 22 points, including 18 kills, one block and three aces. Zhejiang's Liu Yanhan and Ren Kaiyi had 21 and 18 points, respectively.
Natalya Mammadova scored 24 points to lead Altay Volleyball Club to their first ever win in the 2018 FIVB Volleyball Women's Club World Championship.
Altay's offence had a good run with Mammadova's spikes and Anarkulova's aces, likewise their defence was tough with Zhejiang's main weapon Liu in the opening set. The Kazakh club built a big lead, which they protected until they closed the set at 25-14.
In the second set, Zhejiang recovered from the setback in the opening period as their main hitters Liu and Ren Kaiyi converted on their attempts to build a lead after the second technical timeout. Ren scored on a cross-court spike that sealed the second set for Zhejiang 25-18.
Zhejiang opened the third set with a lead, courtesy of Ren, who continued to score. Mammadova's strong swings from the right flank helped Altay grab a slim lead. Zhejiang moved to within one point at 21-20. Altay reached set point, but Liu scored three straight points for Zhejiang to cut down the lead 24-23. After a long rally, Anarkulova's spike was blocked out to give Altay a 2-1 set advantage at 25-23.
Both sides relied on their key hitters - Altay with Mammadova and Anarkulova, and Zhejiang with Ren and Liu. After deadlock at 18-all, Liu guided her team to elude Altay 25-23 in the fourth set. In the final set, the score was deadlocked at 7-all, but Mammadova and Matea Ikic made clutch hits for a 14-8 advantage, until Liu's service blunder conceded set and match to Altay 15-9.