LIC get the better of Postal, qualify for second phase

Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) held off a mid-match challenge from Postal to register a 25-22, 25-20, 18-25, 25-10 victory in the 19th State ‘A’ Division league volleyball championship at the Sree Kanteerava stadium on Wednesday.

With four points in their kitty and one game to play, LIC joined BSNL and ASC in the second phase of the league. Postal are on two points with an all-important game against MEG remaining.

LIC asserted their dominance in the first set with former India captain Sree Shekar and Vikram gelling well. Shekar’s potent smashes left Postal clueless with no retrievals on most occasions.

Vikram got himself into good positions before smashing at the net and troubled the Postal defence quite a few times. LIC wrapped up the first set without great difficulty at 25-22.

In the second set, Postal showed glimpses of a resurgence with the lanky Karthik S A using his reach to good measure. Karthik’s leap coupled with the smashes helped Postal take a 12-10 lead.

But, LIC then got their act together with Avinash Shetty and Nakul contributing some crucial points to tie the set at 19-19. Vikram then landed a few winners as LIC closed out the set 25-20.

Postal bounced back to clinch the third set 25-18. Vinod Kumar, Karthik and Lakshmi Narayan garnered the bulk of the points with their serve-set-smash game plan working well.

The trio’s efforts ensured Postal built a six-point lead at 18-12. From then on it was all about consolidation and Postal did the job to perfection spurred on by good net play by Sampath and Janardhan.

LIC, though, produced a ruthless performance in the fourth set. The combination of Shekar and Vikram picked up points at regular intervals.

Leading 13-5, LIC chugged on with Shekar’s drop shots very neat and smashes too hot for the Postal defence to handle as they completed formalities at 25-10.
Result: ‘A’ Division: LIC bt Postal 25-22, 25-20, 18-25, 25-10.

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