By Rawle Welch
This Saturday’s climax of the Tradewind Tankers ‘True Champions’ Volleyball Tournament promises to produce sizzling action if one is to judge from the performances of all four teams during the semi-finals which was played almost two weeks ago.
The venue is the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall (CASH) and the two teams set to clash for bragging rights as to which is the best in the nation is defending national champions Young Achievers and the experienced, but sometimes inconsistent Castrol Strikers, while the playoff for third place pits Port Mourant Training School versus Rollers, also of Berbice.
The feature clash from all reports is shaping up to be a classic and volleyball fans are being urged to come down to the CASH to possibly witness an epic showdown between the two teams that all the pundits rate as the best in the country.
The West Demerara-based Young Achievers have dominated the sport over the past two years and they will obviously start as favourites against a rejuvenated Castrol Strikers unit that produced a scintillating display in their semi-final encounter against Port Mourant, beating them in straight sets when many felt that the visitors held the advantage.
Achievers a well drilled team led by the indomitable Randy Adams easily disposed of their opponents Rollers in their semi-final matchup after being strengthened by the return of their No.1 setter Khemraj Sigh, while Christopher Ramsundar has really come on leaps and bounds during the competition and is a leading candidate for the Most Valuable player award, while the lanky Cleveland Peters led in the blocking department and was also exploded with some thunderous spikes.
Strikers, a team built around vast experience produced what was clearly teir best performance to date and seemed to be oozing with confidence during their demolition of their opponents.
Once again, Adolph Davis, Ian Wills and Desta Hoppie are expected to lead their charge for victory, while the supporting cast of Kerwyn Richards and setter Dhanpaul Etwaroo should also feature prominently.
When the two teams clashed earlier in the tournament, the more youthful Achievers side coasted to an easy win and it must be said that they hold the psychological advantage, but that may not come into reckoning against a team as seasoned as Strikers.
The third place playoff could also produce the sort of top-class volleyball that fans love to see and this fixture too has bragging rights at stake. Port Mourant’s Seon Glasgow, a former national standout will team up with the vastly improved duo of Jared Jhingree and six-footer Quacy Matheson and that combination is an imposing frontline for spikers to penetrate.
On the other hand, Rollers have the edge in experience and if they utilise that aspect to their advantage them an upset could be in the making.
Whatever the outcome, the teams have shown that despite the sport’s inactivity, hard work and commitment still produces quality.
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