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Men's Div. 2 A : Crusaders stride out in front
Posted by Media Team on 2019/1/1 14:37:52 (84 reads)

End of year review, Division 2A (Men's London Volleyball League)
Baks are nearest challenger
Flaming Six Crusaders missed out on promotion at the end of last season, finishing third in the division but, after a good start to the new campaign have strengthened their hopes for first division participation in the autumn.

That promising start was followed by four matches, alternatively away and home in which they beat Lynx 2 in three reasonably close sets, then found Red Rebels conceding their game rather than travel to Battersea Sports Centre. After that, a visit to Whitechapel for a close game against Blockbusters that went to four sets and, in mid-December, an easy three set dismissal of an under-strength Baks.

That disappointment against Crusaders apart, Baks recent matches have passed in a comparable fashion to Crusaders'. The concession of their game by IVA Persia in early November was a similar bonus and was followed by three sets conquests of Lynx at home and Red Rebels away.

IVA Persia occupy third place in the table at the Christmas break thanks in part by having played one game more than all but one of the others. They will have been pleased with their three set win at home against Lynx 2 and even more at dismissing Red Rebels away, also in three sets, but annoyed with themselves for allowing Blockbusters to get the better of them at Moberly Sports Centre in four sets.

AVC are only two points behind with a game in hand and, given the experience of the team's players, still look a threat for the second part of the season. Visiting Red Rebels, they took their hosts to five sets in a very close match before, in a home fixture, beating Blockbusters in four before an easy conquest of Tunnel Diggers.

Because of the deduction of AVC points as a penalty, Blockbusters are equal on points but in fifth position on sets difference. They will be keen on revenge when the meet AVC again at home on 9th March being encouraged by having taken a set off all the teams above them when they played - except Baks who were taken to five. Competition is this division is very much alive.

Having started the season with a win, Lynx 2 finished the year with another when they beat Tunnel Diggers in three sets and, with a game in hand over Red Rebels just below them can still climb the table after the break. their first game will be at home at Leyton VI Form College against Red Rebels on 13th January. Depending on Blockbusters' result, they could immediately climb a place higher in the league table. Their only winning points having come from the concession of their home fixture by Tunnel Diggers, Red Rebels, the second team that has played seven times, will be hoping to do better in 2019, building on promising performances against Blockbusters and AVC while Tunnel Diggers traditionally improve in the second half of the season and should not be under-estimated.

Contributor, Douglas Barr-Hamilton

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