Ahmedabad Defenders scored a hard-fought 7-15, 15-10, 15-13, 15-14, 10-15 win over Kolkata Thunderbolts to make it to the last four stage of the Rupay Prime Volleyball League championship at the GMC Balayogi Stadium (Gachibowli) here on Saturday.

This was fourth win in five matches for Defenders which took the team to the top of the points table with eight points while Thunderbolts suffered second loss in five matches.

K. Rahul and Vinit Kumar gave Thunderbolts a wonderful start and as always captain Ashwal Rai was there all over. Vinit helped the team win a super point at 11-7 and see the team wrap up the first set.

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In the second set, Defenders’ Shon T. John, who was adjudged ‘player of the match’, was the more dominant with his awesome spiking in the face of an erratic defence.

In the third set, to the surprise of Thunderbolts star player Ashwal Rai, Angamuthu matched the rival captain with his trademark smashes and Hardeep Singh complemented him.

In fact, it was the excellent coordination in defence by Defenders which made the difference as the normally brilliant Ashwal Rai, Mohammad Riyazudden were not given the liberty to run away with those telling spikes for which they were known. For Thunderbolts, Mathew August was off-colour this evening and that proved costly in the final analysis.

The result: Ahmedabad Defenders bt Kolkata Thunderbolts 7-15, 15-10, 15-13, 15-14, 10-15.