PVL: Ahmedabad Defenders knock out Calicut Heroes to enter final

Ahmedabad Defenders on the attack against Calicut Heroes in the semifinal of the Prime Volleyball League at the Regional Sports Centre in Kochi on Saturday. Photo: PVL

Kochi: Ahmedabad Defenders entered the final of the Prime Volleyball League with a 17-15, 9-15, 17-15, 15-11 win over Calicut Heroes at the Regional Sports Centre, Kochi on Saturday. The Defenders will face Bengaluru Torpedoes in the final on Sunday.

Angamuthu was named the player of the match in the semifinal.

Falah, who replaced Matt Hilling in the Calicut squad, made his presence felt straightaway earning the first point. With skipper Muthusamy Appavu setting up his attackers, especially Angamuthu, with perfect passes, Ahmedabad remained on the toes of the opposition.

Just when it looked Nandagopal might edge Ahmedabad ahead, Jerome Vinith came to the party and broke down Calicut's defence. But Ahmedabad maintained their composure, and with Danial making a difference from the middle, the Defenders pushed themselves ahead in the match.

Jerome duped Ahmedabad with a soft serve and earned two points to create an opening for Calicut. Sandoval put a monster block on LM Manoj as Calicut put pressure on Ahmedabad. Falah turned the tables from the service line and Calicut levelled the playing field.

Fast and furious spikes from Falah kept Calicut in control, as Mohan led the Heroes as the playmaker. But attacks from Santhosh kept Ahmedabad in good spirits and closed down the gap. Danial kept tricking Calicut's defence with smart drop shots, and with Calicut making one error too many, Ahmedabad took control of the match.

Manoj started making an impact late in the game and suddenly Calicut found themselves completely on the back foot. Angamuthu kept earning points for Ahmedabad with attacking play, while Sandoval's blocks remained futile. With the Defenders winning back-to-back super points, Ahmedabad sealed the win to earn themselves a ticket to the final.

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