The World No. 4 side beat 12th-ranked Thailand 25-19, 25-21 and 25-23 in a hard-fought match in Pool F of the World Grand Prix in Hong Kong.
The Thai team went into the match after a 3-1 loss on Friday to China and have yet to taste a win in the second leg of the global tournament. In the first leg in South Korea last week, they upset No. 7 Serbia but lost to South Korea and Germany.
Italy took an early 8-5 lead in the first set on their way to winning it. Thailand took an early lead in the second set before Italy came back strongly to clinch the set. The Italian team broke open a tight contest late in the decider before wrapping up the match.
“Italy played very well. It is a good chance to play with one of the best teams with good strategies and techniques," Thailand coach Kiattipong Radchatagriengkai said after the match.
"They did a very good job, using all the techniques like serves, blocks and counter attacks. We try to do our best to learn from the game and I wish Italy good luck in the games next week."
"It was a very good game for us to learn from the good players and earned a lot of experience," added Thailand Captain Wilavan Apinyapong. "We need to keep improving our skills.”
Thailand will take on Japan on Sunday. The match at Hong Kong Coliseum kicks off at 12.15pm Thailand time.
A total of 28 countries are competing in the FIVB World Grand Prix, with matches staged in 20 cities starting from July 25. Thailand, the US, the Dominican Republic and Brazil will play matches in Bangkok from Aug 15-17. The final matches featuring the top six teams will take place from Aug 20-24.
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