The final of the National Cup was played on Saturday, 14th April 2018 in the National Volleyball Centre Kettering. The match was against Team Northumbria, and after a very tight and even tussle, the team had to relinquish the title to the northerners. The match was lost in straight sets 3:0 (25:23; 25:23; 27:25) and so the trophy that had found a comfortable home in the hands of IBB Polonia London had to make the journey to Newcastle.
The match saw a very level performance between both teams, but the start of each set saw IBB Polonia London the more dominant on each occasion. At each of the three first technical time outs, a strong lead had been developed, but the pattern developed each set and the team from Newcastle managed to pull back their deficit and overhaul IBB Polonia London just before the end of the set. The MVP trophy was awarded to Adam Bradbury from Newcastle.
“The game was very even, but in the end of each set Northumbria improved their standard just enough to take the sets.” commented IBB Polonia London captain, Bartosz Kisielewicz.
“We played good volleyball, but in each set we made one or two errors that caused us the loss. I think they came as a result of the pressure of the match, and a lack of experience at that level. Our opponents played very steadily and served very well; this made the difference.” said Head Coach Piotr Graban.
The match contained many amazing exchanges and the spectacle was super exciting for the fans that had travelled north to Kettering from London.
“The sportshall was full of volleyball fans; the vast majority proudly sported the match shirts of Polonia. We really thank them very much for their amazing support as usual.” added Kisielewicz.
The match is to the end of the season. The Super 8 division is still to be decided, and the Semi Finals are being played against Sheffield Hallam.
“The atmosphere isn’t amazing, but this is normal after an unexpected defeat. More importantly, the guys want to fight and we started training as of Monday in order to prepare for the Semi Finals. I am hopeful we will beat Sheffield Hallam, which will give us the chance to beat Team Northumbria in the finals.” ended Kisielewicz.
“We are fighting hard in training. We want to win the Semi Finals, to sort out a few small details and take revenge over Newcastle in the finals of England.” concluded Graban.
The stakes are high this weekend. The team will compete for a place in the final. The volleyball spectacle will take place over two days between the two teams from the top region of the table. The games will take place at Brentford Fountain Leisure Centre; the home of IBB Polonia London. The games are scheduled to start at 4.30pm. Tickets are available here: https://polonia.eventbrite.co.uk.
IBB Polonia London is the quadruple Champion of England (1990/1991; 2012/2013; 2015/2016; 2016/2017).