Thunderbolts put it past Blue Spikers

Kolkata Thunderbolts shrugged off early blues to record a 13-15, 15-11, 15-14, 15-8, 10-15 win over Kochi Blue Spikers in the Rupay Prime Volleyball League championship at GMC Balayogi Stadium (Gachibowli) here on Wednesday.

This win means Hyderabad Black Hawks will take on Ahmedabad Defenders in the first semifinal on Thursday and Kolkata Thunderbolts meet Calicut Heroes in the second semifinal on Friday.

Playing for pride, Blue Spikers started well by winning the first set thanks to central blocker G. Dushyanth, Abdul Raheem, setter G.S. Prashant and Cody Coldwell.

In the second set, Thunderbolts, up against a spirited attack led by Raheem with solid support from Prashant and T.R. Sethu, was equal to the situation in the tense final moments before clinching the set.

Blue Spikers’ Dushyant suffered a knee injury and was carried off the court with the scoreline reading 4-2 in Kochi’s favour in the third set. With Kochi leading 11-9, Thunderbolts won the first super point as Cody served into the net and it clinched the second super point too with Ashwal showing his class.

Even though Ashan’s spike saw Kochi level the scores 13-all, Vinit Kumar came up with a telling spike and to the dismay of Kochi, Sethu spiked out to hand over the set.

In the fourth set, Thunderbolts had a far easier outing with K. Rahul coming up with big serves, U. Janshad excelling as a setter, and player-of-the-match Vinit producing the finishing touches to help the team clinch the set and the match.

The result: Kolkata Thunderbolts bt Kochi Blue Spikers 13-15, 15-11, 15-14, 15-8, 10-15.

Thursday’s match (first semifinal): Hyderabad Black Hawks vs Ahmedabad Defenders, 7 p.m.

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