By NIKOLE JAVIER
World No. 4 Brazil drew strength from Felipe Roque to sweep China, 25-19, 25-17, 25-17, in Week 3 of the men’s Volleyball Nations League (VNL) on Saturday, July 8, at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Roque fired 17 points on 12 attacks, four blocks and an ace as the Brazilians wrapped up their campaign in the Philippine leg with two wins against two losses for an 8-4 card for a spot in the finals phase in Poland set July 19 to 24.
Otavio Rodrigues also shone for Brazil with 11 points, even as Ricardo Souza and Adriano Fernandes helped with combined 15 points.
The Brazilians were on point from the start until endgame despite some moments of aggression from the Chinese side.
Brazil fell to Italy on on Tuesday, July 4 before bouncing back against the Netherlands two days later.
The Brazilians then fell short in their bid to upset No. 1 Poland on Thursday.
“The standings are very close, so each win is important for the team and also for the world rankings,” said Roque.
Bin Wang was the lone double-digit scorer for China with 11 points as Zhang was limited to nine points in the losing affair.
With an 11-2 slate, China will miss the quarters apart from being relegated to the FIVB Volleyball Challenger Cup (VCC).