OBB vs Nemostars – 25:19, 25:22, 17:25, 25:17 (3-1)
KCCA vs Tigers – 33:31, 25:20, 25:21 (3-0)
Sport-S vs Nkumba – 25:17, 25:19, 25:15 (3-0)
In a heart-stopping showdown at the Old Kampala Arena, the Orange Block Busters (OBB) clinched a spot in the 2022/23 National Volleyball League playoffs by defeating the Nemostars in a fiercely contested four-set match.
With both teams needing a victory to secure a playoff spot, the stakes were high, and the action did not disappoint. OBB made a strong start with the return of veterans Ivan Ongom and JB Opendi proving to be a game-changer.
The Shukran camp came back from a three-game back-to-back loss to claim the first set 25-19.
OBB got off to a strong start in the second set but Nemostars’ captain George Aporu made his presence felt, exploding from a pipe to reintroduce his side to the contest.
OBB got off to a great start in the second second set with Hussein Adome setting up Cosmas for a kill in Nemos’ position five to score their first point.
However, Captain George Aporu of Nemostars soon made his presence felt, exploding from a pipe on Cosmas, who was stationed in six, to reintroduce his side to the contest.
The explosion from Aporu inspired Nemostars, who briefly took the lead, only to be caught up by OBB, who then returned to the pilot seat.
Nemostars’ net-defense was blunt after Bernard Malinga and George Aporu had rotated out, making way for Kasumba, Jonathan Kigozi, and Deo Anguria, who had subbed off Esau Ecil.
OBB’s Cosmas continued to torment Nemostars even in the second set, as his side attempted to maintain their seven-point lead with only five points remaining until game point.
Despite Nemostars briefly taking the lead, OBB fought back, and a serve out by Jonathan Kigozi sent Nemostars into a sideout, allowing OBB to regain the lead.
The cup holders, OBB, and six-time champions, Nemostars, were rekindling their rivalry from last season’s final after the playoffs.
In the third set OBB coach Johnson Kawenywera was forced to make a triple substitution, bringing on the “lost and found” center player Salva Marial, opposite Ivan Ongom, and senior setter John Bosco Opendi to try and regain control of the game.
Despite the damage control efforts, the margin between the two teams continued to grow, with Nemostars pulling ahead by nine points at 21-13.
The frustration on the Iganga side (OBB) was visible from their serves, receptions, and execution of rallies.
In the final showdown (set four) Aporu delivered an exceptional kill from position four, showcasing his impressive skill set but OBB remained firmly in control, with an 11-point lead and only two points away from winning the set.
The game’s final moments saw a decisive play by OBB’s latest returnee to the team, setter Kimtai with a well-executed dump that secured the final point needed for OBB to win the last set 25-17 and secure their spot in the highly coveted 2022/23 season playoffs.
It was a remarkable display of skill and determination from both sides, with OBB ultimately proving to be the stronger team.
Tomorrow on March 12, 2023, four matches are scheduled to take place and the first match will be between NEMO and Nkumba, starting at 10am.
The second match between Tigers and UCU is scheduled to start at 12pm. and the third match, between Ndejje and Sky, is set to begin at 2pm.
The fourth and final match of the day will be between OBB and KAVC, starting at 4pm.