Kenya sweeps aside Algeria
Kenya progressed to the semi finals of the ongoing CAVB Women’s Africa Nations Championship at the Safaricom Indoor Arena in Nairobi.
The hosts and defending champions eased into the last four with an emphatic 3-0 (25-20, 25-22, 25-19) victory over bitter rivals Algeria in an entertaining contest played before a capacity crowd.
This was Kenya’s second win in Pool A following their opening 3-0 victory over Mauritius on Thursday.
“Algeria are a seasoned side and am glad with how our players reacted to this challenge. Not conceding a set was very crucial,” coach David Lung’aho said.
Kenya Prisons duo Brackides Agala, Mercy Moim and Lydia Maiyo tore through Algerian blockers to claim a 8-6 lead at the first technical timeout, enroute to claiming the first set.
Algeria threatened to take over the proceedings in the second set by assuming a 9-7 lead, but Kenya, buoyed by a strong home support, soon after restored the advantage.
Kenya’s last pool will be against Botswana on Monday at 12 noon.
In other fixtures, Cameroon, Senegal and Botswana also clinched crucial victories as the tournament entered day three.
However, Senegal’s 3-2 victory over Tunisia was the most telling win of them all.
The West Africans seemed down after falling behind in the first two sets (14-25 and 17-25), but they rallied to turn the game around and claim an improbable win.
Buoyed by support from a partisan crowd at the 5,000 seater facility, right attacker Bineta Njiaye and Fatou Diock, both of whom are based in France, orchestrated the comeback as Senegal swept away three straight sets (25-18, 25-20 and 15-12).
“The fighting spirit is within us. We showed it in our match against Cameroon and then again today. The fight continues” Njiaye told Nation Sport.
Botswana hammered Mauritius 3-1 (25-22, 23-25, 25-23, 25-15) while Cameroon trounced Morrocco in straight sets of 25-17, 25-18 and 25-15.
Kenya is in Pool A with Botswana, Algeria and Mauritius while Senegal, Cameroon, Tunisia and Morocco make up Pool B.
The top two teams from each pool will proceed to the semi finals of the event, whose ultimate winner will represent Africa at the FIVB World Cup in Japan in September.