By a Staff Reporter
Kathmandu – The women’s volleyball team of Nepal returned home to a heroes’ welcome on Thursday after lifting the title of the AVC Central Zone Volleyball Championship held in Bangladesh from December 23 to 28. On the other hand, the men’s volleyball team which finished fourth in the same tournament return home crestfallen.
It is said that the winners create history. It was natural for the warm reception for the women’s volleyball team at the Tribhuvan International Airport. Minister for Youth and Sports Maheshwar Jung Gahatraj, former sports minister Daljit Sripali, President of Nepal Volleyball Association Manoranjan Sharma among others received the women’s team with much fanfare.
Minister Gahatraj, captain of the women’s volleyball team Aruna Shahi, coach Jagdish Bhatta and NVA President Sharma expressed their views after the warm welcome. By that time, the members of the men’s volleyball team had already returned home. They were hardly noticed by anybody. The team that returned empty handed did not receive a proper welcome.
Both teams had left for Bangladesh together. Both the teams were bade farewell. But the women’s team returned as champions while the men’s team returned home without any medal. They were treated accordingly. The sports authorities did not even complete any formality of receiving the players who represented their country in an international tournament.
Captain of the men’s national volleyball team Im Rana said they were not expecting a warm reception after failing to win a medal.
“The women’s team deserve a warm welcome for their achievement. However, they could have just completed the formality of welcoming both the teams who had participated in the same tournament. But nothing as such happened,” said Rana.
“We don’t have any qualms,” added Rana, “We were not expecting anything.”
Rana further said that although they failed to win a medal the team’s performance was overall satisfactory. Nepal had defeated Uzbekistan in the league round but lost with the same team ending hopes of winning a medal.
“We couldn’t play as expected during the third-place playoff,” said Rana, adding, “Their standard was better than ours. Their experience and playing style are also better than ours.”
Rana recalled that they could not perform well because they failed to kill the chance ball.
“The coach should have taken risk after some players did not move. But the coach did not take any risk.”