Nay Pyi Taw (Myanmar), Aug 11
India settled for the silver medal after suffering a 1-3 loss against Chinese Taipei in the final of the men’s Asian U-23 Volleyball Championships.
India put up a brave fight after losing the first two sets to secure the third set. However, blocking and reception errors by India in a hard-fought fourth set allowed Chinese Taipei to seal a comfortable 25-21 25-20 19-25 25-23 win in the end. India were slow to get off the blocks and allowed the opposition to take the first set, especially after the 10-point mark. India mounted a comeback in the later part but the deficit proved too big to overturn eventually and the Amit Gulia-led team ended up conceding the set 21-25.
In the second set, powered by the combination of Muthusamy and Shon John, India held on to a slim lead for most part. However, they conceded the lead close to the 20-point mark after which Chinese Taipei never looked back. This resulted in an almost similar scoreline for the second set. The third set saw some improved blocking by the Indian blockers Shikhar Singh and Prince, but service errors at crucial points allowed a Chinese Taipei recovery midway through the set. The Indian spikers upped their game in the closing moments of the set and made the most of errors by the opposition to take the set 21-19.
In the decisive fourth set, Chinese Taipei maintained the pressure from the first minute as Chang YS and Sung PT’s spikes got the better of Indian blockers early on. But Shon John’s quality spikes and some impressive blocking kept bringing India back into the match. Despite trailing by seven points at one stage, India brought the difference to a single point as India trailed 23-24. But Chinese Taipei didn’t take long to wrap up matters and a powerful spike once again proved too good for the Indians, giving Chinese Taipei the set as well as the game. — PTI
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