NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 24 – Egypt came from a set down to beat Kenya 3-1 (18-25, 25-23, 25-20, 25-17) in the ongoing Africa under -23 women’s Volleyball championship to put a firm grip on the ticket to the World championship to be held in Slovenia early next year.
Egypt, who are boasting of four players in their senior team, took advantage of Kenya’s poor back line to inflict a painful loss which now leaves the hosts at the mercy of neighbours Rwanda to beat the Pharaohs in their next match Tuesday if they were to win the other ticket.
A win for Egypt over Rwanda mean Kenya will have to beat Paul Bitok coached Rwanda in the last match Thursday to grab the other available ticket to Slovenia. Kenya will face Senegal in their next match Tuesday.
Kenya served off the match with great intensity, scoring two quick points through Kenya Prisons’ Yvonne Wavinya and Dorine Marani but lost the gas in the subsequent sets.
The first set ended 25-18 in favour of the junior Malkia Strikers who are searching for their second consecutive trip to the world. Kenya last took part in the worlds in 2013 in Mexico.
Egypt came to the second set with vigour taking the lead from the first service to the end and despite Kenya’s late comeback in this set; the Arabs grabbed the set 25-23.
Kenya had trailed the Egyptian but cut the their lead to within a point at the tail end of this set having scored two quick points from Marina’s services to 23-25 but a block out by Wavinya saw Kenya surrender their one set advantage.
The third set was not easy for either sides but Egypt took a point lead in the first set technical timeout after Kenya made three consecutive falls.
But a leaking roof and power outage at Kasarani indoor stadium gave both coaches time to restrategize after the match was temporarily stopped.
According to the rules of the game, a match cannot continue if there is a drop of water on the court.
The pep talk between Catherine Mabwi and her charges though did very little to the host who surrendered the lead after going down 25-20 in this set. Egypt then wrapped the match 25-18, the easiest set of the match for the victors.
Meanwhile Botswana recovered from a painful loss to Kenya yesterday yo register their first win thanks to a hard fought (23-25,25-22,25-22,25-23,15-13) win over Senegal in the first match of the day.
The loss by the West Africa leaves them with a 0-2 win-loss ratio having gone down 3-1 (26-28,25-17,25-14,25-19) in their opener against Rwanda Sunday.
Rwanda vs Egypt
Senegal vs Kenya
-By Elvince Joshua