China continue to fly high at the World Cup ©CGTN

Defending champions China continued their inexorable march to the International Volleyball Federation Women's World Cup title, with their ninth win from nine games in Osaka, Japan.

But they were made to work by The Netherlands, eventually coming through 25-19, 25-16, 21-25, 25-19.

The reigning Olympic champions are bidding for a fifth world title in this round-robin event, which has moved to two new venues.

The Municipal Central Gymnasium is now hosting the Chinese, who sit four points clear of the United States.

It was a tough battle for the Americans against Russia, who put up a sterling performance, but eventually fell short in five sets, 26-24, 22-25, 22-25, 25-17, 8-15, at the Edion Arena Osaka.

Sitting third in the table, it was Russia's second loss of the tournament and they now lie two points adrift of the US, who have just one loss.

Brazil have been hugely competitive at this World Cup ©FIVB
Brazil have been hugely competitive at this World Cup ©FIVB

Brazil and South Korea also enjoyed comprehensive wins over Cameroon and Kenya, respectively.

The South Americans have been very competitive, with six victories and three defeats, and will be looking to finish the competition with further wins against South Korea and Russia.

Other matches saw Dominican Republic beat Argentina 3-0, and Japan edging Serbia 3-2.

While the title seems destined to go to China, they still have two matches to play.

Tomorrow they play Serbia, who have four wins, with their tournament concluding against Argentina on Sunday (September 29).

Having already beaten arch rivals the United States earlier in the week, it would be a major surprise if China didn’t take home yet another World Cup.