Sliema move to Super League second place
The Women’s Super League has so far presented a series of evenly balanced games, particularly between the four top teams Fleur de Lys Royal Panda, Balzan Flyers Crosscraft, Paola and newly promoted Sliema Wanderers. In particular it was the games between Paola and Sliema that attracted most attention with both previous encounters between the two sides lasting more than 2 hours and ending in favour of the Paolities 3-2.
Sunday 25th February was a long volleyball day at the Cottonera Sports Complex with the Under 14 League starting early in the morning, followed by 2 hard fought games between Valletta and Mgarr from the Men’s Super League (3-2) and Fleur de Lys Royal Panda and Balzan Flyers Crosscraft from the Women’s Super League (1-3). These results forced the game between Sliema and Paola to start almost an hour late, for what promised to be yet another long battle between the two teams.
Sliema made their intentions clear right from the start going 7 points up immediately at the start of the first set and 5-0 up at the start of the second. In both sets Paola made an impressive comeback which resulted in different outcomes between both sets. While in the first set Sliema managed to administer their advantage to close the set at 25-23 in their favour, they failed to do so in the second set which ended at 20-25 for Paola.
With the third set being evenly balanced, in which Sliema managed a win (25-21) only in the last handful of points, the fourth set seemed to once again start going in Paola’s direction. During the early stages of the set both teams went up point by point. However the turning point seemed to come with the score standing at 12-12 when Paola’s so far consistent serve receive conceded two unusual consecutive direct points. This gave a slight advantage to Sliema and even though they struggled to keep their opponents’ attempt at a comeback under control, they managed to still take the set home (25-21) and the game (3-1).
This win puts Sliema in a temporary second place in the Women’s Super League, a surprise to most seeing how only last year Sliema were still trying to obtain promotion from the First Division. A number of games still need to be played and much can still change at the top of the table but the end of the Season will definitely be a nail-biter right until the last game.
Under 14 Girls
Worthy of mention were also the performances given by our Under 14 girls, some of whom as young as 9 years old and in their first competitive season. Despite failing to win their games, all girls were given valuable court-time which will further help in their improvement. The future looks bright and we can’t wait to keep working hard with our budding stars.