Valletta win Men’s National Volleyball Cup

Wednesday, March 10, 2010, 17:12


Game 1 : Defenders Aloysians 0 Valletta VC 3 (23-25, 19-25, 28-30)
Although the final score gives the impression that this was a rather easy win for Valletta, a closer look to the set scores clearly shows that they had to fight for every point, especially in the first and last set.

Keith Mercieca was setting for Defenders and this helped the attackers, especially Louis Scriha, Gordon Cachia and Malcolm St John to attack regularly. Aloysians managed to open a small lead in the middle of the first set, but Valletta managed to equalise at 18-18. However, Defenders went up again at 22-19 and 23-22, but 3 vital points from Valletta secured them the first set. The latter kept on a high note in the second one, opening up a 9-0 lead on Anatoly Gatt’s services, and although Defenders tried to close in, it was an impossible task for them.

Nevertheless, they did manage to stay close to their opponents in the third set, closing in at various moments of the set. With Owen Spiteri using Valletta’s assets, especially Dalton Caruana and Cedric Bondin from the outside and Paul Tonna in the opposite position, Defenders had to rely on a very solid defence, especially from libero Mark Apel, to stay in the game. And when they lost Louis Scriha to an injury at 23-24 all seemed more difficult, however they managed to battle out a few other points until they lost 30-28.

Referees: Marvic Micallef, Nadia Tagliaferro

MVA president Branko Vlahovic, presenting the trophy to Valletta captain Jonathan Chetcuti.

Game 2 : Valletta VC 3 Defenders Aloysians 1 (25-14, 25-10, 24-26, 25-18)
With Robert Balzan returning for Valletta, and Dalton Caruana moving to a more familiar central position, Valletta took the first 2 sets without any difficulty against a rather depleted Defenders Aloysians side, missing the services of Louis Scriha and Malcolm St John from the beginning, and Alex Spiteri early in the game. It took Valletta a mere 40 minutes to wrap up the first 2 sets, with Robert Balzan and Cedric Bondin spiking from the outside, and Dalton Caruana being very effective from the middle.

Valletta rested some of the first team players in the third set, and Defenders Aloysians grabbed the chance to stay much closer to Valletta. Keith Mercieca relied heavily on outside spikers Gordon Cachia and Justin Montesin to obtain the points, with the youngster having a very good match against much quoted opponents.

With the score 23-21 in favour of Valletta, they opted to do a number of substitutions to strengthen their squad, however a rotation error at the end gave the necessary points to Defenders to take this third set.

Things returned to normal in the fourth set, with Valletta playing much better and taking the necessary points to close this match in their favour, and win their first title for this season. At the end of this match, MVA president Branko Vlahovic, awarded the trophy to Valletta captain Jonathan Chetcuti.

Referees: Nello Calleja, Frankie Tanti


TGIF 1 Phoenix 3 (21-25, 25-19, 17-25, 20-25)
Both TGIF and Phoenix showed a huge improvement from their last matches, with this match resulting in a tight affair, aptly finishing the regular season on a high prior to the Playoff matches that will start at the end of the month.

Phoenix started stronger, with Alexandra Meier being very effective in her sets, but TGIF kept very close, going ahead on several occasions during this set. Phoenix however managed to close the first set in their favour, but with Danae Gingell playing a huge match, TGIF were very much in contention by winning the second set. This was TGIF’s first set won against Phoenix this season, and gave them a huge boost of confidence for the next sets.

However, Phoenix managed to stay calm, and playing very effectively managed to win the last 2 sets which gave them a 3-1 win. They will now enter the Ladies’ 2nd Division playoffs with a 2-point lead over the same TGIF.

Referee: Steve Farrugia


  1. alistair says:

    good feature also on the times of yesterday guys


  2. dumpy says:

    branco, branco, branco good show lads !!!


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