India too strong for Nepal

Kathmandu, July 29

Indian women volleyball player were too strong to be beaten by the Nepali team as the visitors sealed a 2-0 victory in the two-match friendly series here at the National Sports Council covered hall today.

India registered their second straight victory, another 3-0 win in the best-of-five contest. Let alone the match, Nepali women volleyball players are yet to win a set against India.

They came close to getting one today, but fell agonizingly short. Nepal were leading by 24-23 and got the chance to seal the opening set of the match but the spikers let go the opportunity before India won the set 26-24.

Nepali volleyball players fought hard in the second set as well and went neck-to-neck. But they just could not keep the momentum going and faced a 25-20 defeat to go 2-0 down. Nepali players looked tired and the first two sets revolved around Pratibha Mali and Saraswati Chaudhary.

Unlike the first match where Mali dominated the show for the home team, players like Saraswati Chaudhary, Nebica Chaudhary, and Aruna Shahi also did well in today’s match.

The first two sets were evenly contested but the visitors led by healthy margin and registered a 25-19 victory to win the third set and the match. Nepal coach Sudesh Kumar Rimal was satisfied with the overall performance of the team. “The two matches have helped us a lot in gaining experience for future tournaments,” said Rimal.

“I am happy with the players’ performance as they played really well against a strong team like India. The friendly matches will be helpful in raising our standard,” he added.

India coach Vaishali Fadtare said the level of Nepali team had gone up compared to past. “The Nepali players put up a better show than we had expected. They gave us hard time in winning the third set of the first match and the opening set of the second game,” she said.

“The Nepali team’s weakness was the second spiker and blocker. Nepal can have a better team if they can improve on that areas,” added Fadtare, whose team had nine players from the 12th SA Games gold medal winning squad.

The friendly series was organised by the Nepal Volleyball Association to inaugurate the mat donated by International Volleyball Federation.