National volleyball team Malkia Strikers left Argentina for Poland on Monday morning having lost all their first leg games of the FIVB World Grand Prix Group Two.
The African volleyball queens lost by straight sets to hosts Argentina, Bulgaria and Dominican Republic in the first leg that was held in Tucuman, Argentina, and this result saw them finish bottom of Group Two having won none of their three games.
Despite mounting a week long training camp in Buenos Aires in Argentina prior to the competition, Kenya started their campaign by losing to Argentina in sets of 25 – 22, 25 – 21 and 25 – 13.
They then followed this up with another straight sets loss to Bulgaria on Saturday evening as they went down in discouraging sets of 25-17, 25-17 and 25-9.
And yesterday, the team wrapped up their first leg activities with a 3-0 (25-21, 25-21, 25-20) loss to Dominican Republic who proved too strong for the Kenyan team.
Kenya Pipeline captain Triza Atuka impressed spectators with her brilliant blocks as she single handedly constructed a wall for Kenya against the deadly players from Dominican Republic.
Coach David Lung’aho explained that the level of competition in Group Two is much higher, but that they aim to post better results in the second leg.
“This group was never going to be easy. The level of competition here is much, much higher and the girls are trying very hard to keep up. I am however a little disappointed with the diminishing mental strength of the girls. They seem to have given up and they are making too many mistakes especially in the final sets,” he told sportpesanews yesterday.
This performance comes just a fortnight after Kenya lost its second bid to qualify for the Olympics after losing to Puerto Rico and Columbia in the World Olympics qualifiers held in Puerto Rico.
The second leg of the Grand Prix will commence this Friday where Kenya will play Puerto Rico, Poland and Argentina.