Tokyo Olympics gold medalist France completed a four-match sweep of Quezon City swing with a 25-16, 25-19, 19-25, 25-21 victory over Germany Sunday in the Volleyball Nations League at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Earvin Ngapeth, who was rested in the previous match, had two blocks to finish with 18 points to go with team-high nine digs and four receptions as the French improved to a league-best 7-1 record.
Stephen Boyer, who also played big with 16 points and six digs, was happy to leave the Philippines with the victory despite the tough challenge the German posed in the third set.
“It’s always good to win. It’s not the good way but it’s okay. We have to restart in the fourth set and the most important is the victory. We will gonna rest and travel. Our next stop is our games in Japan and just continue to go on our way,” said Boyer.
In a country which has basketball as the most popular sport and volleyball not far behind, Boyer hopes that the Filipinos were somehow inspired by France’s world-class play. The Quezon City leg is one part of the French journey for another shot at the Olympic gold in 2024, where Boyer’s country is hosting the Paris Olympics.
“For me, it is the first time that I discovered the Philippines. It’s nice to play here in this gym. It’s really great to play here,” said Boyer.
Germany, for its part, lost for the fifth time in eight matches.
Linus Weber led the Germans with 16 points, while Lukas Maase had three blocks to finish with eight points.
Despite the struggles in the Philippine leg where Germany paraded a young team, Weber appreciated the support has given from the fans.
“What can I say, the best thing to do is playing good volleyball. Let’s make a good show and if they like us, they enjoyed the show,” said Weber.
After sitting out in last Saturday’s straight-set win over Japan, Ngapeth went guns ablazing in the opening set by scoring six points, and led the French in closing things out in the fourth set with seven points.
The event has Mikasa, Ganten, Gerflor and Senoh as global sponsors and global suppliers, PLDT Home as presenting partner, Rebisco, MG Philippines, TOP Speed Insurance, Asics and Maynilad as official sponsors, Havas Ortega, The Look Company, Summit Outdoor Media, The Philippine Star, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Marketing Media Ventures, Strong Media Advertising Solutions. 91.5 Win Radio, Philippine Olympic Committee, Philippine Sports Commission, City of Taguig, Quezon City and F2 Logistics as official suppliers.