Pool H - Kenya beat Uganda towards gold at World Championship qualifier

27 July 2013

2014 FIVB World Championship qualifier

CAVB Pool H Men

Kenya defied a partisan cheering home fans to beat Uganda 3-0 (25-15, 25-22, 25-16) to achieve its second straight victory in the Men’s 2014 FIVB World Championships African Group H Qualifiers at MTN Arena in Kampala, Uganda on July 26, 2013.


The first set started on a high note with both teams aiming to gain quick points. Double blocks but captain Ibrahim Oduor and James Ontere and accurate attack by Philip Maiyo saw Kenya took 2-0 lead before Uganda recovered to narrow the gap to 3-1.


Uganda with the help of their top star Dickens Otim fought back strongly but the powerful Kenyan marched on to take 8-3 lead at first technical time out.


After the time out two Uganda scored two successive points to narrow the gap to 8-5 but the hard hitting Kenyans responded with powerful spikes from Ontere, Maiyo, Oduor Mike Chemosand Saul Wafula to score more points and take 16-9 advantage at second technical time out.


With Kenya leading 19-11, Ugandan coach made several changes to his squad in bid to re-organize his game plan but this did not help as the Nairobi team continued to dominate the proceedings with fast attacks to seal the set 25-16 and take 1-0 advantage.


The opening minutes of the second set were closely contested but Uganda took the first point before Kenya rallied to tie 1-1. Uganda, playing before their vocal home fans improved attacks and blocks to score crucial points that saw them tie at 5-5, 6-6 and 7-7 but a Chemos spike penetrated the opponents defense with precision to give his team a narrow but crucial 8-7 lead at technical time out.


Uganda’s combination of Otim, Philip Wandawa and Emma Kato then started attacking ferociously at the net and scored quick points to keep the points close. Uganda took the lead at 13-13 and this forced Kenyan head coach Gideon Chenje to call time out. And with scores at 15-15, it was the case of who gets the first points to take the lead at second time out. Oduor then blocked Kato to hand Kenya the crucial point for 16-15 advantage.


From here it was a one-point game as the teams tied at 17-17, 18-18, 19-19, 20-20, 21-21, 22-22 before Kenya opened a two-point gap at 24-22. Kenya did not waste the opportunity as a successful quick net attack by Makiso handed Kenya the set at 25-22.


In the third set, Kiptoo’s float serves proved tricky for Ugandans as Kenya scored seven straight points to take 8-1 lead at first technical time out.


Kenya would then open a five point gap at 10-5 but Uganda threateningly recovered to bring the points difference to 11-7 but the Nairobi team improved its attacks and blocks to stretch the gap to 14-7. Kiptoo’s skillful display at net gave Kenya 16-7 lead at second technical time out. Kenya would then wrap the set at 25- 16and claim the match.


Kenya had won their opening respective opening matches played on the first day of the competition on Thursday. Kenya dismissed Tanzania in straight sets while Uganda beat Burundi 3-1 sets.


By Oscar Pilipili, KVF press officer