St Albans 1 - 3 Tendring

19-25, 22-25, 25-21, 15-25

Report by Stuart Dove

A new look Tendring team travelled to St Albans for their first competitive game of the season in the first round of the National Cup. A strong Tendring squad were keen to start the season with win and on paper the division one side would have too much firepower for their division 3 opponents. This proved to be the case during the first set and a solid Tendring passing unit created good opportunities for new setter Sullivan to spread the play. Tendring never really got out of 1st gear but they were able to comfortably take the set 25:18.

The second set started in much the same way with some explosive hitting from Walker and Yiannakkos giving Tendring an early lead. A run of errors by the passing unit and on the service line saw St Albans draw level 12:12. However an impressive service run by House coupled with solid blocking by Halberg saw Tendring take the second set 25:20.

During the third set player coach Dove made some changes and the team struggled to find a rhythm. For every explosive play there was a simple error that followed. St Albans hustled well and their solid defence allowed them to take the set 25:20.

The fourth set saw Dove make further changes with the impressive Lamb starting as setter. A scrappy set followed with both teams trading points up until 12:12. This took Dove to the service line and a series of accurate serves put the St Albans passing unit under pressure and Tendring raced into a 5 point lead. Bruce and Baker impressed with some excellent defensive work and Tendring were able to secure the set 25:21.

Following the game player coach Dove said "These games are always difficult as we are expected to win, the pressure is on us to perform. As a first game together I thought we did well, however the players know that there is more to come from this team. I firmly believe that this is one of the strongest Tendring squads I have been involved with and I'm excited about watching this team and our performances develop."

Tendring men 1's next fixture is this Sunday 3pm at Essex University against Cardiff in the national league opening game. The game will be followed by Tendring ladies who take on London Polonia in the women's Super 8. Entrance is free so come on down and support your local team as they take on their national league counterparts.