NAGOYA, Japan, May 30 (Xinhua) -- Japanese captain Sarina Koga scored a game-high 23 points to lead the hosts to a 3-1 victory over the Dominican Republic in their first match at the 2023 FIVB women's nations league here on Tuesday.
Japan, who finished seventh last season, beat Dominica 25-23, 25-18, 22-25, 25-15 in two hours and four minutes, extending their nation's league record against the Caribbean side to 4-1.
In the opening match between two European neighbors, Germany defeated the Netherlands 25-21, 25-22, 20-25, 25-22.
Three-time Olympic champion China will meet last year's beaten finalists Brazil on Wednesday.
Brazil will feature young talents like setter Macris Carneiro, opposite Kisy Nascimento or outsiders Tainara Santos and Julia Begmann while Chinese scoring machines Li Yingying and Gong Xiangyu are expected to shine.
"In the first stage, we will have a young group, most of whom need experience and evaluation. We will play against strong teams like China, the Netherlands, the Dominican Republic and Croatia and we expect good performances," said Brazil's coach Jose Roberto Guimaraes.
Chinese captain Yuan Xinyue is confident that China will do better than their 6th-place performance last year.
"After last year's training, our team's cooperation and cohesion are better this year. Everyone has a new goal, hoping to show the results of the training," said Yuan.