ARNHEM, the Netherlands, Sept. 24 (Xinhua) -- Brazil, Tokyo Olympics and Volleyball Nations League silver medalists, opened their FIVB Women's World Championships campaign with a 3-1 win over the Czech Republic on Saturday.
The South Americans held their nerve after a solid fight-back from their European opponents in the third set to wrap up the victory 25-20, 25-15, 22-25, 25-18 to surge to the top of Pool D, which also features China, Argentina, Colombia, and Japan.
The top four teams from the pool will advance to the next phase of the tournament.
Star outside hitter and captain Gabriela Guimaraes led from the front in her team's debut with a match-high 24 points. The 28-year-old hitter secured 23 of her points in kills, hitting at a 38.30% efficiency rate, and also fired an ace.
Opposite Kissy Nascimento added 16 points, outside hitter Pri Daroit had 11 and middle blocker Carol Gattaz, who returned to the team after sitting out of the Nations League, got 10.
"It was just our first match in the tournament and it's normal that we leave the court with the feeling that we have some things to improve in our game," said Gattaz. "We knew that it would be hard against the Czech Republic and that we'd have to give our best. But it's going to be the same in every single match here."
Brazil, who had three silver and one bronze medals in the tournament's history, is still striving for the first title at the World Championships.
In an earlier match of Pool B, world No. 14 Thailand got the better of No. 6 Turkey in a thrilling five-setter 17-25, 31-29, 22-25, 25-19, 15-13, as Thailand's spiker Chatchu-On Moksri hammered out 33 points in the nail-biting clash.
Chatchu-On's 33 points included three serving aces, two kill blocks and 28 spikes at a 51% success rate in attack. Ebrar Karakurt had a team-high 24 points for Turkey.
In another match in the evening, world No. 1 United States breezed past Kazakhstan 25-16, 25-13, 25-22 to kick off their pursuit for a second worlds' title.