Dominant Spikers bag inaugural IVL crown

Dominant Spikers bag inaugural IVL crown

The Spikers, who had won three out of four legs in the tournament, were on the mark yet again in their final match against the Hyderabad Chargers to win 25-19, 21-25, 25-20, 25-17 and gather 35 points overall for the title at the Kotla Vijayabhaskar Reddy stadium.

The Chargers finished second overall, just two points shy of the leaders while the Yanam Tigers, settled for the third spot, a further two points behind, with 31 points.

The Karnataka Bulls, who were far from impressive in the tournament despite having a good team, went down to the Tigers in their final match 25-18, 18-25, 21-25, 25-19, 12-15. But courtesy some respectable performances in the second and third legs of the tournament, they finished fourth overall with 29 points, ahead of the Maratha Warriors (27) and Kerala Killers (25) in fifth and sixth respectively.

In the day’s final match, the Chargers, after conceding the opening set rather tamely, found some good rhythm and did well enough to overcome the Spikers to make it 1-1. However, with Spikers’ Prabhakaran, Kapil Dev and Mandeep Singh turning up the heat in the third set, the final leg hosts had very little chance of taking the lead. Once the third set was won, it was just a matter of time before the Spikers got their hands on the crown.

Results: Maratha Warriors bt Kerala Killers 25-18, 25-20, 25-14; Yanam Tigers bt Karnataka Bulls 18-25, 25-18, 25-21, 19-25, 15-12; Chennai Spikers bt Hyderabad Chargers 25-19, 21-25, 25-20, 25-17.

Individual awards: Most valuable player: Gurvinder Singh (Hyderabad). Best spiker: Prabhakaran (Chennai). Best blocker: Navjit Singh (Chennai). Best universal: Gurvinder Singh (Hyderabad). Best setter: KJ Kapil Dev (Chennai). Best libero: Vinod Negi (Hyderabad). Best server: Sanjay Kumar (Karnataka).

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