JAPAN, September 4 – Kenya reverted to their losing run after going down in straight sets (25-16, 25-16, 25-19) to Korea in the third round of the FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Cup on Friday.
The Malkia Strikers who were hoping to collect their second win after cruising past fellow Africans Algeria, failed to maintain the tempo in an encounter where Mercy Moim finished with 10 points against Korea’s Yeon-Koung who top scored on 20.
Korea dominated the entire clash after shooting 43 attacks to outscore the African champions who only charted 25 spikes as well as serving better with seven aces but the Kenyans fared better in blocks 5-3.
“Congratulations to Korea for the win. Our players really wanted to win this match but we will leave to fight for another day. The most important thing is to play our best and enjoy the matches. In this game, we learned a lot and we will aim to improve in the games ahead of us,” Malkia Strikers head coach, David Lung’aho said after the match.
His skipper, Bracksides Khadambi added, “We want to congratulate Korea for their win. We tried our best and we will continue trying and gaining more experience and I know we are going to win.”
Korea’s main hitter Yeon-Koung, paced her attacks in the first set and placed it well in unguarded areas of the Kenyan court with Moim tried to spark a scoring run but their opponents had better advantage to secure the first set with a comfortable 25-16 victory.
Kenya countered well in the second set that kept the score tied at 7-all, but Korea managed to get out of a long rally with them and open a five-point advantage at the second technical timeout 16-11.
Korea clinched the second set 25-16 as they took advantage of the absence of Moim, who had to sit out in the set due to a minor injury.
In the third set, Korea maintained their pace and jumped to an 8-2 lead in the first technical timeout as Lung’aho charges came back to within two points 19-17, but could not completely overturn the Asian side who notched the set and match victory 25-19.
Kenya who fell back to second from bottom on three points, take on Serbia before rounding up their World Cup campaign with Peru on Sunday.