Nepal win friendly volleyball against AfghanistanThe friendlies are part of the teams’ preparations for AVC Asian Senior Men’s Central Zone Volleyball Championship.
Nepal registered a hard fought victory in the first of two friendly volleyball matches against Afghanistan at the Army facility in Lagankhel on Wednesday.
The friendlies are part of the teams’ preparations for AVC Asian Senior Men’s Central Zone Volleyball Championship slated for August 17 to 28 at the same venue. The thrilling match saw Nepal win the second, third and fifth set to win a five-set thriller 22-25, 25-17, 25-21, 23-25, 15-13. After losing the first set 25-22, Nepal won the next two 25-17, 25-21. The match was extended to the fifth set after the visitors won the fourth 25-23. The competitive last set saw Nepal edge Afghanistan 15-13.
Nepal, preparing for the first international tournament almost after one year since participating at the Indonesia Asian Games in September last year, included three new faces in their squad: Rajendra Bista, Durga Bahadur Khadka and Tek Bahadur Awasthi. The home teams conceded too many points while service.
In the first set, Afghanistan earned four straight points from 17-17 to move into comfortable position at 21-17 before wrapping it up 25-22. Nepal lifted their game in the second set when they scored four straight points from 7-7 to lead 11-7. They continued to strengthen their grip and extended the margin to 20-14 at one point before winning it 25-17. Nepal played with high tempt early in the third set and were leading 16-10. Afghanistan tried to bounce back into the game but the home team eventually took the set 25-21.
Afghanistan held their nerves in the competitive fourth set as the match went neck-to-neck until midway with both sides scoring 16 each. But Afghanistan scored next three points to put pressure on the hosts. Nepal closed in on their visitors taking the score to 22-23. But Kul Bahadur Thapa wasted his serve to hand the visitors two point advantage before the Afghanistan won it 25-23 to prolong the match into fifth set.The last set was a see-saw affair as the teamswere locked at 10-10 at one point. Nepal closed in on victory at 14-13 beforesealing it 15-13.