Chennai Spartans coach happy with team's performance despite semifinal loss

Chennai Spartans coach M.H. Kumara felat that poor reception has cost the team the semifinal against Iranian side Shahrdari Varamin in the Asian men's club volleyball championship.

PVL champion Chennai Spartans in action. (File Photo)   -  [email protected]

Chennai Spartans coach M.H. Kumara said “poor reception” has cost his team the match after losing the Asian men’s club volleyball championship semifinal 4-1 to Iranian side Shahrdari Varamin at Taipei on Thursday. After losing the first two sets, Spartans won the third set, but eventually succumbed in the fourth set to lose the tie 23-25, 22-25, 25-22, 25-27.

“For instance, in the second set when we were leading 9-5, we let them secure four points and draw level 9-9 because of reception errors,” Kumara said.

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He felt a challenge (referral) by Iran in the fourth set should’ve been in Chennai’s favour. “They referred for antenna touch. And from the video replays it was clear that the ball (hit by the Indian side and missed by the opposition) hadn’t touched the antenna. But the point was given to them.”

Kumara said his team’s service was its greatest strength in its road to and in the semifinal. “Reception, setting and bocking are to be improved,” he added. 

He said he is happy with his team’s overall performance. Chennai is the first Indian club to have reached the semifinals in the championship history.