Bahrain romped to a straight sets win over Syria last night in their third Group B game of the 2023 West Asian U-19 Volleyball Championship in Jeddah to top the four-team table with nine points from a hat-trick of victories and waltz through to the next round of the eight-team tournament.
Syria, who slumped to their third consecutive loss, were completely outplayed as the Bahrainis easily went 1-0 up in the game by taking the first set 25-11.
Bahrain built on their lead by also taking the second set, 25-11, with their aggressive, unrelenting style of play.
Syria tried valiantly to fight their way back into the game in the third set, which they needed to win to stay in the match. But Bahrain were having none of it and sealed a comfortable victory by clinching the third set 25-16.
“Our boys played brilliantly and built up pressure on Syria from the start,” a pleased Bahrain team manager Abdulla Mahroos told the GDN by phone from Jeddah.
“And they have played fabulously well in all three matches. They dominated Kuwait similarly in our opening game, which we won 3-0, and left the UAE side searching for answers in a game which, again, we won without dropping a set.
“Another straight sets win in our third game means we are yet to drop a set in the tournament. That is a fantastic achievement, by any standards.”
The kingdom’s team will now play Qatar, who finished last in Group A after losing all three of their matches, in the next round tomorrow. If Bahrain win that match, they will go through to the semi-finals.
“We will aim for another straight sets win against Qatar,” Mahroos added. “We need to capitalise on the momentum we have built up. Our boys are high on confidence and looking forward to qualifying for the semi-finals.”
The UAE finished second in Group B with two wins and their loss to Bahrain while Kuwait finished in third place with one win and two losses.
In Group A, which featured hosts Saudi Arabia, Lebanon and Jordan, along with Qatar, there was much tougher competition.
Saudi Arabia won their first two games against Qatar (3-0) and Jordan (3-1) but slumped to a 3-2 loss to Lebanon in their third match to finish with six points.
Jordan also finished with six points after beating Lebanon 3-1 in their first game and Qatar 3-0 in their last, with their loss to Saudi Arabia sandwiched in between.
And Lebanon made it a three-way tie on six points because of their wins against Qatar 3-0 and Saudi Arabia.