Marvelous Malkia Strikers promoted to Group 2 after upsetting Peru in Grand final

By sportsnewsarena correspondent
Jul 12, 2021
  • Group 3 winners Kenya on the podium in Australia.(Photo:FIVB)

  • Kenyan players celebrate after winning the Gold medal.(Photo:FIVB)

  • Kenya in action against Peru in the finals.(Photo:FIVB)

Kenya will play Group 2 World Grand Prix next year after beating Peru 3-1 in an enthralling final in Canberra, Australia.

Kenya captain Brackcides Khadambi was thrilled after the Malkia Strikers won the Group 3 Gold medal on Sunday.This is the highest achievement ever by the nationalteam in an International competition.

"It's a great result in our history. It's the beginning of good things to come in the future."

"I know that now at least we are somewhere in the world. I know that now when people see us they just don't just see us as good at athletics, we are now also good at volleyball."

"We are very confident heading to the Olympics, because I know now that we can qualify."

Kenyan coach David Lungaho affirmed that his team was now ready to face the World's best.

"One thing we knew, that if we were going to make it to the final round, we would go for it. When we left home we said we would go for final four, and if we did that we would go for it.We are ready now for the world."

He added:

"For us we came into this match with a lot of confidence, believing in themselves.It's a big thing for Kenya, a big thing for Africa. For so many years we have been playing global competitions, and just winning sets. Now we are winning matches."

Kenya arrived in Canberra this week predicting they would surprise people, and they were true to their word by beating Peru 3-1 in the FIVB Group 3 Grand Prix final.

The Grand final 

After dropping the opening set to Peru, 21-25, Mercy Moim and Ruth Jepngetich led Kenya into recovery, dominating Peru to take the second set 25-17.

The third set went point-for-point, until the Kenyans pulled away late 25-22. With the title and a return to Group 2 slipping from their grasp, Peru threw everything at the Africans in the fourth set, and opened up a 3-point lead at the midway point.

But the Kenyans were not to be denied, winning several long rallies and applying pressure on the South Americans, taking the final set 25-23.

The disappointment for Peru was compounded by the site of star player, Angela Leyva, being taken from the arena in a wheelchair after badly injuring her ankle.

After a disappointing 3-0 loss to Peru in the semifinal, the young Colombian team was back to its best as they finished with the bronze medal after beating host nation Australia 3-0 (25-12, 25-22, 25-16) at the Group 3 Final of the FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix on Sunday.

 

Compiled from FIVB