Champions Kenya cruise to semis

Monday October 9 2017

Kenyan players celebrate a point against DRC during their Africa Nations Championship match at the Palais des Sports Indoor Arena in Yaounde on October 9 2017. PHOTO | CAVB |

Kenyan players celebrate a point against DRC during their Africa Nations Championship match at the Palais des Sports Indoor Arena in Yaounde on October 9 2017. PHOTO | CAVB |  

By CELLESTINE OLILO
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Defending Champions Kenya eased into semi-finals of the ongoing women's Volleyball Africa Nations Championship after a 3-0 (25-17, 25-15,25-12) triumph over Democratic of Republic of Congo at the Palais des Sports Indoor Arena in Yaounde on Monday.

The win saw Malkia Strikers make it three wins out of three in the competition that also acts as a FIVB Women's World Championship qualifier. Kenya plays Tunisia in its final pool B match on Wednesday.

The Japheth Munala coached side beat Nigeria 3-0 (25-16, 25-8, 25-10) and Senegal 3-0 (25-21, 28-26, 25-15) in their first two matches, and Monday’s result made them the only team yet to drop a single set in the competition which has brought together nine countries.

Kenyan setter Janet Wanja reacts during their Africa Nations Championship match against DCR at the Palais des Sports Indoor Arena in Yaounde on October 9 2017. PHOTO | CAVB |

Kenyan setter Janet Wanja reacts during their Africa Nations Championship match against DCR at the Palais des Sports Indoor Arena in Yaounde on October 9 2017. PHOTO | CAVB |

Munala, who is chasing his first continental title with the national team, was elated and heaped praises on his players before asking them to stay focused on the ultimate prize.

“The fact that we have began well is a plus for us. It is always crucial to start off with good punch, especially when you are playing in North Africa so I am glad that we have done that.

“I don’t want the players to get carried away because there is still a lot to be done. We must keep focused so that even when we get to the semi-finals' we perform just like we have done in these three games.

“Last year we were unfortunate and had two players getting injured during the tournament. This year I pray that we will have all players available for the entire tournament,” said Munala, who also doubles up as the Kenya Pipeline team coach.

Munala had started with a well experienced side that included setter Janet Wanja, Violet Makuto, Edith Wisa, Triza Atuka, Noel Murambi, skipper Mercy Moim and libero Agripina Kungu.

The Kenyan team dominated with their spike service as the opponents suffered from bad reception and backline defence. The impressive Wisa finished with 13 points followed by Trizah Atuka with 12, as Margot Mutshima contributed eight points for the losers.

The top two teams at the end of the competition will qualify for the 2018 FIVB Women's World Volleyball Championship in Japan.