Manchester Marvels 2 - 3 Tendring Mens 1st

22-25, 22-25, 25-13, 25-19, 9-15

Report by Owen Lamb

An away trip to Manchester Marvels was Tendring VC’s second match of the weekend. After a disappointing loss in the previous game, they bounced back with a battling 3-2 victory over Marvels.

After a shaky start, solid passing from Bruce and Walker allowed Tendring to establish a strong attacking presence in the set and House powered home winner after winner to make the score 16-13 to Tendring going into the second technical timeout. The threat of the Tendring middles opened up the opposition block and allowed the wing hitters to execute some superb attacks. Tendring were able to keep the three-point gap and won the set 25-22.

The second set followed much the same pattern as the first, with Marvels quick out of the blocks then Tendring taking control of the middle part of the set. Again powerful attacking was the foundation of Tendring’s control, with Lamb able to find Dove on the right side for some excellent cross-court attacks. A strong service run from Halberg stretched the lead and Tendring took the second set 25-22.

Fatigue set in for Tendring in the third as the effects of Saturday’s game started to take their toll on the team as lapses in mental concentration gave Marvels a large lead and bar a few points won by Yiannakkos with some clever shots, Marvels were able to take the set with relative ease (13-25).

Fatigue continued to be a factor in the fourth set with Marvels taking a 2-8 early lead, Tendring looked nervous and series of unforced errors saw Tendring behind at the second technical timeout as well. Despite some good defense from Bruce, Tendring were unable to get back into the set losing 19-25.

Tendring regained focus during the interval, and a passionate team talk ensured all players went into the fifth set firing on all cylinders. On the back of some sniping hits from Halberg perfectly finding the corners of the court, Tendring took a 5-3 lead. The refocused passing unit of Walker, Bruce and Yiannakkos, enabled Lamb to consistently run an incisive offense and Tendring were 8-5 up at the change of ends. With some dominating blocking from Lamb and House, they pressed home their advantage to take the final set 15-9.

In Tendring’s first five set match of the season, it was great to see such a spirited response to losing two consecutive sets and still come out on top.