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London Volleyball : Two more sides make Cup second round unopposed
Posted by Media Team on 2018/9/11 9:00:00 (244 reads)

Fixture update (English Volleyball cup, first round)
Onyx and Richmond play in London
While most London League sides continued to relax with their season not starting until the end of September, National League and a few ambitious sides from the regional competition started to ramp up their training early as they have to meet an important challenge next weekend when the first rounds of the national knock-out competition take place.

The fixture list requires K S Osemka men to travel to Suffolk and play Newmarket in their first round match on 15th September. They will be keen to win as the second round draw offers them a home fixture against Super League Richmond Docklands and the chance to show off their talents in front of a big and supportive crowd. Tad Dan, K S Osemka chairman, said, "Having entered the cup once, many years ago, the club has grown considerably since then, and we decided now was a good time to give our players the opportunity and experience of playing against National League opposition." With Osemka only in London's first division and Newmarket in division three of the National League the game will provide a fascinating comparison the leagues' standards.

ULU had a home draw also to take on the Portsmouth club, Urbond but their opponents withdrew only on 5th September saying they will be unable to provide their opposition after the LVA had encouraged everyone to visit the recently opened Moberly Centre to watch the match. That said, the next round will give them the prestigious tie of a game at the centre against IBB Polonia, runners up last season and Cup winners the two previous years.

Onyx men will be at home against Suffolk side, Stowmarket in another fixture that permits assessment of the standard of London volleyball. Stowmarket play in the same division as Newmarket and Onyx are newly promoted to London's Premier and will see this as good preparation for their opening fixture against the powerful Wapping Wildcats.

Aces have a bye in the first round and will have a home fixture against Onyx in the second round on 6th October

Lynx men have to travel to North Cambridge to play Rhinos (St Phillips) although the teams will meet a week later than originally scheduled. Lynx club decided at the end of last season not to continue to play in the National League and their opposition has never played at that level. The victors will be at home to National League first division, Tendring in the next round so both will be keen to progress.

London has rather more entrants in the women's cup. As with ULU, we had sad news from London Inter too: at the end of August Southampton contacted them to say they are withdrawing from the cup. Ivan Moreno told us, "It is a shame since we have been training for a month preparing for this early start of the season and next week I am taking the team to Spain for a training camp and play a tournament as part of this planned preseason."

All the women's matches will be played on Sunday when there will be seven London representatives. Two of the ties will be all-London affairs with Richmond's second team at home to Polonia IMKA, the winners to play away against either Ipswich or Essex Trinity will be one. In the other Onyx play at home against Dartford whose local league competition is in the Kent League. Dartford say they are excited to meet London Onyx in the first round of the National Cup competition as they are expecting a tight and competitive game. They've noted Onyx's success last season with their promotion in the London League and Dartford are similarly looking to advance their own position in the National League Division 2. "We're hoping for an energetic start to our season with two ambitious teams meeting for the opportunity to go on to play Polonia Sideout." Rachel Hynes told us.

Richmond's first team also have a home draw and will face New Forest. Both clubs are in Division 2 (South-east) of the National League so it should prove a good indicator of strength. Victory will require a journey to Bournemouth to play Super League side Wessex, one of the attractions of cup entry.

The remaining London sides were drawn away. Lionhearts travel to Ashcombe Dorking: division 3 against division 2 while NVL division one, Inter, not now playing division 3 Southampton who withdrew, will be away in the second round on 7th October to the winners of the Lionhearts/Ashcombe game..

Losing teams will transfer to the national Shield knock-out competition the first round of which is scheduled for 10th and 11th November.

Saturday 15th September
Newmarket v K S Osemka
Onyx v Stowmarket

Sunday 16th September
Richmond v New Forest
Richmond 2 v Polonia IMKA
Ashcombe Dorking v London Lionhearts
Onyx v Dartford

Saturday 22nd September
Rhinos (St Phillip's) v London Lynx

Contributor Douglas Barr-Hamilton

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