Players of Armed Police Force Club pose with their medals after defeating Nepal Police Club in the final to win the Didi-Bahini Cup Women’s Volleyball Tournament in Parbat on Saturday. Picture: Anil Malla Thakuri/Republica
PARBAT, Feb 23: The departmental team Nepal Police Club has missed a chance to win its first title as it failed to hold on to its lead and went on to lose 3-1 against Armed Police Force (APF) Club in the fourth Didi-Bahini Cup Women’s Volleyball Tournament in Parbat on Saturday.
Police had reached the tournament’s final for the first time, but it failed miserably in its bid to win the title after failing to hold on to its lead.
Police won the first set, but then could not keep the momentum going and lost in its first final to eventually lose the game 3-1.
With the win, the defending champion APF went on to win its third title in the competition’s history.
Police performed well in the first set in the final of the tournament, which is organized on the occasion of the 13th Gandaki Province-level Women’s Festival. Police won the set 25-15 taking advantage of a poor defence from APF.
However, it could not continue the same momentum in the second set.
APF faced a big problem with spiker Saraswati Chaudhary getting injured during the second set. She stayed out of the game for a while but came back just in time to launch a big comeback in the set and eventually win the match.
Chaudhary returned back when APF was trailing the second set 16-12 and performed superbly to help the team win the set 25-18.
In the third set, Police failed to show its positive mindset and lost the set 25-21 despite presenting a strong challenge to APF with the score on 18-18 at one point.
APF, however, won the fourth set easily 25-12 to win the title for the third time.
With the win, APF was rewarded with a cash prize of Rs 200,000, while the runner-up Police won Rs 100,000.
APF coach Mahesh Prasad Chaudhary said that the poor defence was the reason his team lost the first set.
“We had to lose the first set after a poor performance from the defence. We faced some problems with the defence in the second set as well. We then got into more pressure when Saraswati Chaudhary got injured in that set,” coach Chaudhary said.
“But, our strong aspect is blocked too. The players did not lose their patience in the game and got back in the game easily.”
Police coach Rupesh Bista said that the lack of combination after the first set was the reason his team lost.
“There are new players in the team and we were good overall along with the defence in the first set. So, we were successful to get the lead. But, we faced deficiency with a spike from the second set. Despite going level on the score with APF in the second set, we lost the set after failing to perform well in spike,” Bista said. “Our attack was poor in the third set. Despite using all the parts well, we could not win the match. But, we played well in the game.”
Earlier, in the third-place playoff, New Diamond defeated the other departmental team Tribhuvan Army Club on straight sets.
Inspired by Panamika Rai's performance, New Diamond saw off Army 25-23, 25-21, 25-22 to win the match and finish third.
With the win, it has bagged a cash prize of Rs 50,000.
APF’s Saraswati Chaudhary was named the best player of the tournament and received Rs 10,000.
APF’s Niruta Thagunna, Police’s Kopila Rana, Kamala Pun, New Diamond’s Salina Shrestha and Panamika Rai were named the best spiker, the best blocker, the best setter, the best libero and the best server respectively. They all got Rs 5,000 each along with APF’s Mahesh Prasad Chaudhary being awarded the best coach.