Kolkata Thunderbolts confirmed a spot in the semi-finals of the second season of the Prime Volleyball League with a 15-12, 15-9, 15-14, 15-13, 10-15 win over Chennai Blitz at the Regional Sports Centre on Monday. Vinit Kumar was named the player of the match for his power-packed performance.
Kolkata's defence ate Chennai's overpasses early on with ease. Vinit started making powerful spikes to trouble the Blitz's defence. Jose Verdi and Cody Caldwell combined in the middle to block Jobin Varghese, who was looking dangerous. Janshad kept setting up the balls on the platter for Vinit and the Thunderbolts took control.
With Akhin GS dominating from the middle, the Blitz covered the deficit. But Vinit stood tall and strong to deny Moyo's spike and ensured Kolkata maintained its lead.
A timely review from Cody saved the Thunderbolts an important point. Defensive errors from Blitz did not help their cause. With Moyo controlling the play, Chennai kept finding small openings to make a comeback. Just when Sita Rama started threatening from the middle, Abhilash Chaudhary came to life and added an extra flair to Kolkata's attacks.
Janshad and Vinit's pairing continued to trouble Chennai's defence, while Abhilash's block helped the Thunderbolts tackle Jobin's attacks. A couple of unforced errors from Kolkata allowed the Blitz to get an opening. But a combination play started by Cody ended Chennai's resistance and the Thunderbolts picked up an easy win to confirm a spot in the semi-finals.
Bengaluru Torpedoes will be up against Calicut Heroes at the Regional Sports Centre (Rajiv Gandhi Indoor Stadium) on the fifth day of the Kochi leg of the Prime Volleyball League at 19:00 hrs IST on Tuesday. (ANI)