SHAOXING, China, Dec. 3 (Xinhua) -- Tianjin Bohai of China squandered its two-set led and conceded to Igor Gorgonzola Novara of Italy 3-2, while Guangzhou Evergrande of China defeated Itambe Minas of Brazil 3-1 at the FIVB Women's Club World Championship here on Tuesday evening.
Tianjin took the first two sets 25-17, 25-15, looked to be on the way to an easy victory, but failed to survive the tough serves from their peers, conceding to the Italians in the following three sets 18-25, 15-25, 11-15.
Both Zhu Ting and Li Yingying scored 20 points apiece for Tianjin, with Yuan Xinyue adding 16.
Tianjin who ranked fifth in their only previous appearance in 2012, returned to the championship for its second outing after a seven-year hiatus.
Founded in 1993, Tianjin has won a record 11 national league titles with the latest in 2018. As the reigning Asian champions, Tianjin beat Thailand's Supreme Chonburi for their record fifth continental title in 2019, after those in 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2012. Tianjin also placed runners-up in the Asian Club Championship three times (2009, 2011 and 2014) plus one bronze (2017).
On the other hand, opposite spiker Jovana Brakocevic contributed a match-high 28 points for Novara, with wing spiker Megan Courtney adding 16 points for the reigning European champions who grabbed the continental Champions League title with a win over fellow-Italians Imoco Volley Conegliano, both are debutantes in the championship.
Founded in 1984, Novara won just one national title in 2017, but claimed three national Cups in 2014, 2018 and 2019.
In the other match on Tuesday evening, Guangdong defeated Itambe Minas 3-1 (25-22, 28-26, 23-25, 25-22) in two hours and five minutes.
Wing spiker Tatyana Kosheleva made a match-high 28 points, with Dobriana Rabadzhieva adding 15 points, and Chinese Yang Hanyu also contributed 10 points for Guangzhou, who competed in the championship for a second time this year, after winning the bronze medal in its sole previous appearance in 2013.
Established in 2009, Guangdong won its only national title in 2012, placed runners-up twice in the national league in 2011 and 2013. Guangdong also won the Asian Club Championship in 2013.
For Itambe Minas, opposite spiker Bruna Honorio Marques scored a team-high 15 points and teammate Sheilla Castro De Paula Blassioli added 14.
Minas, the reigning Brazil and South American champions, returned to the championship last year after an absence of 26 years. They competed as L'Acqua di Fiori Minas, and made the final of the second edition in 1992, losing to Italy's Il Messaggero. Last year, they fell to Turkey's VakifBank Istanbul.
Earlier in the afternoon, Conegliano defeated Eczacibasi 3-1 (25-20, 25-22, 22-25, 25-21) in the curtain-raiser in Pool A and Vakifbank downed Dentil Praia 3-0 (27-25, 25-20, 25-20) in Pool B.
The championship features two pools with four team each. After a round-robin format, the top two teams in each pool will compete for the top four places, while the last two teams in each pool will only compete for the 5-8 places.