The USA women open play Wednesday, but the 2023 Volleyball Nations League got underway Tuesday in Nagoya, Japan, and Antalya, Türkiye.
Germany beat the Netherlands in four and then Japan did the same to the Dominican Republic in the first matches in Japan.
Then in Türkiye, defending-champion Italy had to rally twice after losing the first and third sets to Thailand in Türkiye before Poland won the same way over Canada.
Action continues Tuesday with two more matches in both cities.
In Nagoya, Croatia plays Bulgaria and China plays Brazil and then the USA plays Serbia and Korea plays Türkiye.
GERMANY 3, NETHERLANDS 1: Hanna Orthmann had 18 kills, a block and five aces for Germany in its 25-21, 25-22, 20-25, 25-22 victory. Lina Alsmeier had 10 kills and five blocks. Camilla Weitzel had seven kills, four blocks and an ace.
Indy Baijens had 14 kills and three blocks for the Netherlands and Jolien Knollema had 11 kills and two blocks and Eline Timmerman had 10 kills and two blocks to go with an ace.
JAPAN 3, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 1: Sarina Koga had 21 kills, a block and an ace for Japan and Arisa Inoue had 15 kills and two blocks a 25-23, 25-18, 22-25, 25-15 win. Ayaka Araki had five kills and five blocks. Brayelin Martinez had 12 kills, two blocks and two aces for the DR.
ITALY 3, THAILAND 2: Italy, which fought off a handful of match points in the fourth set, battled to a 24-26, 25-17, 27-29, 30-28, 15-11 to avoid the upset.
Sylvia Nwakalor led with 19 kills, five blocks and an ace. Loveth Omoruyi had 16 kills, four blocks and two aces. Anna Danesi had nine kills and three blocks and Alice Degraid had seven kills, a block and two aces. Beatrice Parrocchiale had 21 digs and Loveth Omoruyi 18.
Thailand’s Pimpichaya Kokram had 21 kills, a block and an ace. Italy held a 17-7 blocks advantage.
POLAND 3, CANADA 2: Poland won 20-25, 25-23, 20-25, 25-23, 15-13, capping the victory when Martyna Czyrnianska aced Alexa Gray. It was an unfortunate end for Gray, who had a spectacular match with 36 kills and a block.
Poland’s Magdalena Stysiak had 15 kills, four blocks and an ace, Olivia Rozanski had 14 kills, a block and an ace, Agnieszka Korneluk had 11 kills and four blocks, and Martyna Lukasik had 10 kills. Maria Stenzel had 18 digs.
Gray, who played at BYU and two weeks ago led Conegliano to the Italian league title, also had 12 digs. Hilary Howe had 13 kills and two blocks. Brie King had three kills, two blocks and two aces. Julia Murmann had 25 digs.