What you need to know:
- The newcomers qualified for the play-offs that are scheduled for later this month at a yet to be decided venue.
- TrailBlazers joined defending champions General Service Unit, who finished top of the standings with 40 points from 15 matches same as Kenya Ports Authority, although the coastal side has an inferior set ratio.
TrailBlazers’ founder Richard Joseph said Monday that the team deserved a seat at the table of the men’s Kenya Volleyball Federation National League play-offs.
He made the remarks after the team made its maiden appearance in the league this season, defied odds to finish fourth in the regular season that ended over the weekend at Nyayo National Stadium.
The newcomers qualified for the play-offs that are scheduled for later this month at a yet to be decided venue.
TrailBlazers joined defending champions General Service Unit, who finished top of the standings with 40 points from 15 matches same as Kenya Ports Authority, although the coastal side has an inferior set ratio.
The 2016 champions Kenya Prisons finished third with 37 points, same as TrailBlazers, but Prisons had s superior set ratio.
Joseph said that sacrifice, great effort and the risks he took to put the team together produced results.
“I dared to dream and I’m happy there has been a good ending. We had set our objective of qualifying for the play-offs and we have achieved that. Now our focus is on the title . We know we are new at that stage, but we have qualified by merit and therefore we are ready for the showdown,” said Joseph, who is from Haiti.
Kenya Defence Forces (KDF), who were part of the last season’s play-offs, were relegated to fifth position with 33 points, Equity Bank placed sixth with 32 points, while Kenya Forest Service (KFS) completed the top seven positions with 32 points from 15 matches in the 16-team league.
KFS coach Wachira Gatuiria bemoaned the missed chance to qualify for the play-offs for the second time in a row.
“Once again it was a case of to close yet to far. We had begun the season on a brighter note but lost ground when it mattered. We are going back to the drawing board and hopefully, next season we will be better,” said Gatuiria.
KFS finished fifth last season. At the bottom end, Mombasa Prisons surprisingly finished second from behind.
Mombasa Prisons had placed seventh last season. Mombasa Prisons coach Henry Nyambu attributed their dismal performance to logistics.
“We gave away eight walk overs which has never been the case in the previous seasons. We played seven matches and won three. It’s sad but we had no choice since we are at the mercies of the government. But we are optimistic of a better and improved performance next season,” said Nyambu.