Pratibha Mali of New Diamond Academy spikes as players of APF attempt to block during their match of the APF IGP 4th National Open Women’s Volleyball Tournament in Halchowk, Kathmandu on Tuesday.
KATHMANDU, Jan 31: The semifinals line-up of the ongoing APF IGP 4th National Open Women's Volleyball Tournament is completed after host APF, New Diamond Academy, Nepal Police Club and Western Region booked their places in the last four on Tuesday.
In the semifinals to be held on Wednesday, group A winner APF will take on group B runner-up Western Region while another semifinal match will be held between group B winner Police Club and group A runner-up New Diamond.
In the matches of the league round played at APF's court, defending champion APF registered 22-25, 25-12, 25-22, 25-23 over New Diamond. On the same day, Police produced two victories as it defeated another departmental team Tribhuvan Army and Western Region.
In the first match, Police edged past Army 25-20, 25-14, 25-14 and in the second match it defeated the Western Region 25-12, 25-19, 25-21.
New Diamond's head coach Kumar Rai pointed out poor defensive show from his players cost the match against departmental opponent APF. "As we were already assured of our place in the last four before Tuesday's match, players took the competition against APF lightly," said Rai.
"We need to forget today's loss and now focus on semifinal match as our target is to make to the final," further added Rai.
APF is the record champion of the APF IGP National Open Women's Volleyball Tournament as it has clinched the titles in all the last four editions. APF's head coach Prakash Thapaliya said that his team couldn't win the match in the straight sets because his key players were tired as they arrived from Maldives just on Monday after taking part in FIVB Women's World Championship Qualifiers.
"My key players were in Maldives with national team and returned on Monday only. They couldn't get enough rest which affected the performance though we pulled the victory," said Thapaliya who led APF to gold in women's volleyball at the Seventh National Games.