Volleyball: Bitok optimistic despite Zone V upset

The national volleyball team head coach, Paul Bitok, has insisted that the team’s future is bright following a fairly convincing performance at the just- concluded Zone V Championships, which was staged at Amahoro Indoor Stadium.
The national volleyball team players try to block a spike from a Kenyan player during the final game of the just - concluded Zone V at Amahoro indoor stadium. Sam Ngendahimana
The national volleyball team players try to block a spike from a Kenyan player during the final game of the just - concluded Zone V at Amahoro indoor stadium. Sam Ngendahimana

The national volleyball team head coach, Paul Bitok, has insisted that the team’s future is bright following a fairly convincing performance at the just- concluded Zone V Championships, which was staged at Amahoro Indoor Stadium.

Rwanda scooped a silver medal after finishing second behind Kenya, who stunned them in the final game 3-1 to claim the title. However both teams qualified for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations to be held in Cairo, Egypt, from October 16-22.

“It is a matter of giving them more chances to play as many matches as possible at the international level and I believe at the Africa Cup of Nations we will have a much stronger senior national team,” he said.

The biennial event had attracted four countries namely Uganda, South Sudan, Kenya and hosts Rwanda, and the tournament was played on a round robin format.

Rwanda won their first match against South Sudan 3-0 (25-18, 25-13 and 25-17) and the second against Uganda 3-1 (3-1 (25-23, 25-17, 19-25 and 25-21) before losing to Kenya 3-1 (25-23, 25-22, 23-25 and 25-21). Uganda finished in the third position while winless South Sudan finished at the bottom of the table.

“It was unfortunate to lose the title at our own ground, but we are happy to have achieved our goal of qualification, let’s prepare well as we are meeting other strong sides from North and West Africa in October,” he added

Individual player awards:

Best server: Cuthbert Malinga (Uganda)

Best receiver: Jairus Kipkerui (Kenya)

Best setter: Brian Kipkerui Melly (Kenya)

Best Attacker: Daudi Okello (Uganda)

Best Blocker” Placide Madison Sibomana (Rwanda)

Best Libero: Bosco Mutabazi Bonijuru (Rwanda)

Best defender: Sam Juma Khaoya (Kenya)

MVP: Placide ‘Madison’ Sibomana (Rwanda))

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

 

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