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INTERNATIONAL PARALYMPIC COMMITTEE

China and Bosnia and Herzegovina claim sitting volleyball world titles

Defending champions take the women’s title whilst Bosnia and Herzegovina are now World and Paralympic champions after success in Elblag, Poland. 22 Jun 2014
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Bosnia's men's sitting volleyball team

Bosnia's men's sitting volleyball team celebrates after beating Iran for the gold medal at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

ⒸGetty Images

China and Bosnia and Herzegovina were victorious on the final day of the World ParaVolley Sitting Volleyball World Championships in Elblag, Poland, on Saturday (21 June) winning the women’s and men’s titles respectively.

For China, Saturday’s hard fought victory means that they have now completed a unique double double winning back-to-back Paralympic and world titles.

In one their closest games yet with rivals USA, China lost the first set 25:23 before levelling in the second 25:22. USA then took control in the third taking it 25:19. Just when it looked like the London 2012 silver medallists would finally break China’s dominance of the sport, they hit back 25:21 to take the match to a thrilling fifth and final set.

With the pressure mounting on both sides, China called on all their know-how to see out the match 17:15 to successfully defend their world title.

“USA is very strong, and that’s even greater feeling to win the match. We win now, we’ll go back and start to train again for another Paralympic Game,” said China’s Hunji Huang.

Team USA coach William Hamiter said: “China is the best team in the world, we are disappointed but it was great game. Especially in the tie-break we showed that we are very strong team – we played point for point.”

After losing out to Iran in the gold medal match in 2010, Bosnia and Herzegovina finally secured the world title with a stunning three sets to one victory over Rio 2016 hosts Brazil, who had beaten the defending champions in Friday’s semi-finals.

The first set was a close affair which Bosnia and Herzegovina edged 25:23. Brazil hit back straight away 25:20 to level the match at one set apiece.

Losing the second set only appeared to anger the Paralympic champions who then upped their game to convincingly take the third set 25:7. Soon after, they closed out the match taking the fourth 28:26.

In the bronze medals matches Russia defeated the Netherlands 3:0 on the women’s side and Iran hammered Egypt 3:0 to complete the men’s podium.