June 25, 2024

AVC: Kazakhstan’s Sana Anarkulova fires 'interesting' response on semis matchup with Alas Pilipinas

AVC: Kazakhstan’s Sana Anarkulova fires
Kazakhstan only lost once in the 2024 AVC Challenge Cup. | Photo (c) RM Chua/One Sports

All eyes will be on Alas Pilipinas as they face Kazakhstan in what is expected to be a thrilling semifinal bout in the 2024 AVC Challenge Cup.

Alas Pilipinas will have to overcome a formidable challenge in the form of the tall Kazakhs, led by the impressive Sana Anarkulova--the second-top scorer in the tournament with 65 points.

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The 34-year-old outside hitter is no stranger to facing the Philippines, with the most recent coming during the 2023 Asian Women's Volleyball Championship.

There, Kazakhstan escaped with a 3-2 victory over the NU Lady Bulldogs-led Philippine team. Anarkulova finished with 20 points on 19 attacks and one block in the match.

At the 2018 Asian Games, the Philippines and Kazakhstan also faced off in the 5th-8th semifinals. And the Filipinas, led by Jaja Santiago, fell short against the Kazakhs.

In their previous seven encounters, Kazakhstan has emerged victorious in five matches against the Philippines.

The Filipinas' most recent victory occurred five years ago when they defeated Kazakhstan in the 9th-place contest at the 2018 Asian Women’s Volleyball Cup.

But facing a different Philippine team this time, Anarkulova bared her thoughts on facing Alas in the tournament's semifinals.

“Philippine team is every time [a] strong team, because if I remember last time we played and we win 3-2 [against them]. I think it’ll be [an] interesting [match],” said Anarkulova.

 

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Kazakhstan will seek the same result as in the past years, while Alas Pilipinas will be looking to write a different story this time.

The Philippines-Kazakhstan match will begin later at 7:00 p.m. at the Rizal Memorial Coliseum in Manila. This will be aired live on One Sports and the Pilipinas Live app.