Last updated 8 months ago | By Rodgers Eshitemi
Barasa warns his troops against underrating their opponents.
Kenya Prisons women’s volleyball team are leaving nothing to chance in their quest to retain their national title in next week’s (November 22-24) play-offs at the Kasarani Gymnasium.
The wardresses, who finished level on 18 points with leaders KCB in the regular season, have intensified their training at Nyayo Gymnasium with focus being on the team’s formation and combination.
Though Prisons brilliantly ended their arch-rivals Kenya Pipeline’s four year dominance in the domestic league last season, head coach Josp Barasa is not underrating any of their opponents as they are also eyeing for the sole African club championships' ticket next year.
Prisons begin their title defence campaign against Pipeline next Friday before clashing with fancied KCB the following day.
They will wrap-up their play-offs on Sunday with a tie against debutants Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI).
“So far, we are doing well and I thank God all players are in good shape. There are no any injury concerns at the moment,” Barasa told Standard Sports after yesterday’s training at Nyayo Gymnasium.
“The mood is encouraging and we are set to defend the title. We are currently working on our strong point and team combination before shifting to our weaknesses next week.”
But Barasa, who is also the national women’s team assistant coach, has challenged his troops to make a winning start in the round-robin play-offs.
“There is no room for error at this stage and we must be at our best from the opening match. We know how strong other teams are and that’s why we are not going to take any chances. We can’t afford to underrate any team at the play-offs,” said Barasa.
“We are going to take one game at a time. Though it will be tough against Pipeline, we have our work cut as we must get positive results in the first game.”
His sentiments were echoed by Malkia Strikers middle-blocker Edith Wisa, who said her team has what it takes to defend the title.
“We absolutely have what it takes to retain the title. But as you are aware, each team in the play-offs is equally strong, so we have to fight from the word go,” said Wisa.
“Of course, we are aware of what is lying ahead of us, but the girls are motivated and determined to defend the title.”