Beach Volleyball

***Men, women qualify for 2023 World Championship 

Nigeria’s women’s Volleyball team settled for a silver medal at the just-concluded 2023 CAVB U21 Beach Volleyball Championship in Morocco on Wednesday.

Hosts,  Morocco beat Nigeria 2-1 (13-21, 21-15, 18-16) in an intense match watched by a mammoth crowd at the Beach Resort in Casablanca.

Nigeria started the first set on a bright note beating the Host 21-13 points in less than 20 minutes of play, according to a statement by the Nigeria Olympic Committee, NOC.

However,  the hosts, Morocco mobilised their home fans, whose overwhelming roaring was instrumental in rousing them to their victory in the second set. 

In the third set, Morocco led Nigeria till the 14th point before Nigeria got two crucial points to tie at 14 -14 points apiece.

Nigeria temporarily led at 16 -15 points before Morocco picked three points to emerge Champions of the women’s category.

Nigeria head coach to the tournament, John Iwerima showered encomiums on his players despite their inability to lift the title.

He said the girls still have the opportunity to rule the world if the squad is retained.

“I’m so proud of the girls, to come in and play like we did tonight not only against the Moroccan but the crowd as well.  We had every opportunity to get it done. Unfortunately, we couldn’t quite get it done.

“We had chances of snatching the victory in the third set but it eventually went the way of the host country.

“The mental alertness of the team throughout the championship is incredible. The girls fought throughout the championship and I am very grateful for the opportunity to lead these players to the championship.

“The chemistry together is unbelievable. As long as we have that, we can beat anybody shortly”.

The President of Nigeria Volleyball Federation, Engr.  Musa Nimrod celebrated the team over their impressive outing.

Nimrod said the girls demonstrated tenacity and put up a good fight in the match against Morocco having stretched the game into the third set.

He said: “I said earlier that the girls have all it takes to stand out at the African Beach Volleyball Championship. Indeed, their performance against the Moroccans has confirmed this. 

“Our girls flew the flag of Nigeria beautifully high with their sterling performance against all their opponents. They put up a good fight in the final and they are worth every celebration.”

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s men’s Beach volleyball team finished fifth at the just-concluded 2023 CAVB U21 Beach Volleyball Championship.

Both teams have qualified for the 2023 FIVB U21 World Beach Volleyball Championship in Thailand in November.##