Lanka lose to Iraq 3-1 battle for third place | Daily News

Lanka lose to Iraq 3-1 battle for third place

Asia Men’s Volleyball Challenge Cup:
Two Iraqis make a great effort to stop the strong spiking of Sri Lanka’s Ayesh Dilhan in the semi-finals at the Sugathadasa Stadium yesterday. Picture by Ranjith Asanka.
Two Iraqis make a great effort to stop the strong spiking of Sri Lanka’s Ayesh Dilhan in the semi-finals at the Sugathadasa Stadium yesterday. Picture by Ranjith Asanka.

Sri Lankan spikers failed to live up to expectations in the semi-final of the Asia Men’s Volleyball Challenge Cup when they went down by 3 sets to 1 (25-22, 24-26, 20-25, 20-25) to Iraq at the Sugathadasa Stadium yesterday.

Sri Lanka got off to great start in the opening set to take a firm lead before the first break at 7-4. They maintained this position till a few minutes from the finish when their opponents came back strongly to reduce it to 24-22. The Lankans however gained the most needed three points in quick time to win the set 25-22.

The second set was a thriller with the visitors getting a firm footing by taking a 4-1 lead and kept on increasing their tally to be well ahead of the Lankans 18-9. At this stage Sri Lanka played excellently to reduce the deficit to 23-24. The set went for extra time which gave the opportunity for the Iraqis to grab it 26-24 and draw level at one set all. It was really a ding dong battle and the crowd expectations were dashed by the loss of this set.

In the third set too the Iraqis took full control from the beginning and continued to dominate to win the set 25-20. During this set Sri Lanka failed to pose any threat like they did in the second and went down tamely giving the Iraqis a morale booster.

With one set away from victory the Iraqis entered the court with full of confidence and achieved their win by taking the fourth set quite easily 25-20 with no real challenge coming from the Lankans. It was only in the final stages of the set the Lankan spikers tried to make a comeback but it was too late as Iraq were well ahead of them.

The second semi-final ended with Saudi Arabia beating Bangladesh by 3 sets to 1 to enter the final which is scheduled for today. They will take on Iraq while the semi-final losers Sri Lanka and Bangladesh play to decide third place.

In the morning session United Arab Emirates defeated Malaysia 3-1 (21-25, 23-25, 36-34, 25-21). Malaysia took the first set but UAE came back strongly to outplay their opponents and win the net three sets.

The second game saw Mongolia and Hong Kong go the distance with the latter eventually winning 3-2 (25-21, 20-25, 24-26, 25-17, 15-10).

The Championship will come to an end today with four matches lined up - two in the morning and two in the evening.


 

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