Following on from an impressive performance the day before, Tendring were full of confidence going into the game against Birmingham. Tendring established an early 5 point lead with some tactical serving and clever hitting. However a combination of Tendring errors and Birmingham pressure saw the Midlands team bring it back to 15-16 at the second technical timeout. Tendring managed to establish another 3 point lead but again Birmingham were able to close the gap. Chilcoat remained composed at the service line and his service pressure enabled Tendring to take the first set 25-23.

The second set followed a similar pattern to the first with Tendring winning clusters of points only to allow Birmingham back into the set with a combination of unforced errors and clever Birmingham attacks. An uncharacteristically quiet game from captain Dove saw him replaced by the experienced Porter. Tendring continued to trade with Birmingham in a tense back end to the set. Birmingham had 2 set points but the outstanding Chilcoat ensured that Tendring took a nervy second set 30-28.

Birmingham came out fighting in the third set and established an early lead. Tendring looked nervous and series of unforced errors saw Tendring behind at the second technical timeout. Despite some good defence from Bruce, Tendring were unable to get back into the set losing 25-18.

Tendring regained focus during the interval and with Porter back on court for the final set Tendring were keen to start well. A series of huge blocks by Guimond and strong hitting by Yiannakkos and Chilcoat took Tendring to first technical timeout with a 5 point lead. Tendring were able to maintain this lead with Davies running the offensive with precision. Bruce had the defence well organised and clever serving by Lawrence enabled Tendring to take the game with a 25-17 win in the fourth set. Tendring captain Dove said “At times we played some impressive volleyball but credit to Birmingham they came back strong. Mentally I thought we were excellent today and despite going set points down we had the composure to come away with the win”

MVP Derek Guimond