Dockers disarm champs GSU to book slot in league playoffs

GSU players Cornelius Kiplagat (left), Shadrack Misiko and Kelvin Omuse blocking Equity Bank's Joshua Kiprono during KBF League at Nyayo Stadium on Sunday, Jan 24, 2021. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) laid down an early marker before the Kenya Volleyball Federation (KVF) league playoffs with victory over defending champions General Service Unit (GSU) yesterday.

The Dockers claimed the impressive win as the sixth leg of the national men’s volleyball league entered day two yesterday at the Nyayo National Stadium. Women teams are not playing in the sixth leg.

It was a sweet victory for KPA who qualified for the national play-offs with three matches to play.

Coached by Sammy Mulinge, KPA outplayed their opponents in all sets to register a convincing 3-0 (25-22, 25-14, 25-17) win to remain unbeaten in the domestic league.

However, Mulinge conceded that the 2018/19 KVF’s most valuable player Abiud Chirchir of GSU who had a short stint with France’s Grand Nancy volleyball club gave his boys a difficult time in all the three sets.

Boosted by the return of Enock Mogeni who left the team last year to join Egyptian top tier Smouha, KPA took the lead in the first set and never gave up to narrowly win by three points difference.

Hard-hitting Mogeni combined well with Peter Kamara and Davis Omollo to overpower the soldiers to win the second set by 11 points. 

Despite coach Gideon Tarus fielding his strongest line-up, GSU could not contain the Dockers who wrapped up the third set with a gap of eight points.

“I had prepared the boys physically, mentally and spiritually and our strategy worked well and we were not under any pressure. GSU is a strong side but we proved we were a better side,” Mulinge said.

The Dockers take on former champions Prisons Kenya today before winding up their assignments in Nairobi with a match against AP Kenya tomorrow.

KPA started their sixth leg fixture strongly by beating Kenya Forestry Services 3-0 (25-23, 25-19, 25-23) while GSU clobbered Administration Police 3-0 (25-17, 25-23, 25-19).

In other matches, Prisons Kenya hit Prisons Western 3-0 (25-11, 25-23, 25-15, Equity Bank stopped Prisons Nyanza 3-0 (25-20, 25-11, 25-16) while Trail Blazers floored Kenya Defence Force 3-0 (26-24, 21-25, 25-23, 25-22).