Birmingham’s volleyball team knew that in order to keep their dreams of winning their division title alive they had to beat table-topping Nottingham in what was undoubtedly their biggest game of the season. This would be no easy feat as Nottingham have been the outstanding side of this season, far superior then any of their rivals. Birmingham, thus, played the part of underdog in this tie, knowing full well that if they could muster a victory they would still be in with a chance of winning the league.
It didn’t take long for Nottingham to show what many of us already knew, that they are a class outfit. They rushed to a 25-13 victory in the first game. Nottingham’s powerful number 9 was a real handful throughout the entire game, returning Birmingham’s powerful attacks as well as possessing a deadly accurate spike. With her in the Nottingham ranks it is not hard to see why they have been so successful this season. The scoreline was perhaps a little harsh though, as Birmingham did show sake good link up play and at times real quality, it was just unfortunate for Birmingham that they couldn’t do this consistently enough to put pressure on Nottingham.
The second set went much the same of the first with Birmingham playing some good stuff but failing to gather any real momentum. Nottingham ended up winning the game 25-14 to give them a winning margin of 2-0. Birmingham knew that they had to win the next game, otherwise their dream of winning the league would fall agonisingly short. Unsurprisingly, Birmingham attacked Nottingham in the third game and for a large part of the game they were the better side. However, much like the first two games, Nottingham’s quality eventually shone through and they were able to withstand Birmingham’s initial bombardment, before taking the initiative and running out 25-14 winners.
This meant that Nottingham ran out overall winners 3-0. Birmingham will take heart from their performance, in which they showed they could compete at the highest level at times, if only they could do this more consistently. But for now, for this season at least, their target of winning the league has alluded them but they have vowed to regroup, improve and I would not be surprised to see them challenging for the title again next season.