KATHMANDU, August 30: Nepal's national volleyball team registered a 3-1 win over Bangladesh in its first of the two friendly matches on Tuesday. In the match played at the Army Physical Fitness and Training Center, Lagankhel, Lalitpur, home team Nepal overcame visitor Bangladesh 25-27, 25-17, 25-16, 25-23.
With a win at the home court Nepal took revenge over Bangladesh of the defeat it had faced in the AVC Central Zone Volleyball Tournament held in Dhaka last year.
This match was the fourth meeting between Nepal and Bangladesh in seven years and the win at Army Physical Fitness and Training Center means Nepal has now better record than the visiting team with three victories.
Meanwhile Nepali team had started the match strongly but letting Bangladesh to earn the points committing the defensive mistake saw the host team losing the first set. Despite the pressure posed by Nepali players in the early part of the first set, Bangladesh earned important points with the help of services as well.
After trailing down to Bangladesh in the first set, Nepal improved its performance to win the remaining sets. Especially in the defense and spike departments, Nepali players outshined Bangladeshi players in the remaining sets. Spiker Kul Bahadur Thapa accumulated highest 21 points for Nepal while other spikers Hari Adhikari and Man Bahadur Shrestha earned 13 and 12 points for the winning team respectively. Skipper Im Rana collected nine points for home team.
Nepali head coach Jagdish Bhatta said that players feeling pressure in front of home crowd was the reason behind Nepal losing the first set. “Players were nervous during the first set but they were calm in the remaining sets.
He also said that his players are motivated to continue the winning form. “With this win, players' confidence has been boosted and they are motivated to win the next match as well. But we will have to further improve our service,” added Bhatta.
Meanwhile Bangladesh's head coach Ali Pour Aroji said that his players couldn't play well Tuesday. “Players have to react in the game according to the situation but we failed to understand how Nepal was playing. We couldn't regain control in the match despite winning the first set,” said Aroji.
He also said that he has taken this friendly match series as a chance to give exposure to the young players.
Nepal and Bangladesh will play their last friendly on Wednesday at same venue.