Amorntep helps Nakhon Ratchasima survive South Gas Club’s scare

In-form Nakhon Ratchasima overcame a strong Iraqi challenge from South Gas Club to pull off a dramatic 3-1 win in Pool A.

Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, October 9, 2021 – In-form Nakhon Ratchasima QminC VC overcame a strong challenge from South Gas Club to pull off a dramatic 3-1 (30-28, 27-29, 25-21, 25-20) victory for their second win in Pool A in the 2021 Asian Men’s Club Volleyball Championship at Terminal 21 Hall on Saturday.

Talented Amorntep Konhan scored a match-high 26 points for Nakhon Ratchasima, including 18 attacks from 38 attempts and 6 aces, while Hussein Nameer led South Gas Club of Iraq with 17 attack points.

Fresh from narrowly beating Burevestnik Almaty 3-2 the previous day, the Iraqis started solidly in their second match against Nakhon Ratchasima. South Gas average height is 191cm against Nakhon Ratchasima 182cm. Both teams fought tooth and nail to level at 24-24 in the close first set, then traded fierce attacks. At 28-all, Nakhon Ratchasima performed well in a brilliant rally to move ahead 29-28 and left-hander Amorntep produced a powerful jump serve to end South Gas Club’s challenge in the hard-fought battle.

It was a similar script in the second set when South Gas picked things up and fought back hard to catch Nakhon Ratchasima at 24-24 and 27-27. However, with Cuban Alferedo Zequeira Qairo looking more influential as he went on a scoring spree, the Iraqi team fared better this time to score back-to-back points for the 29-27 win in this hotly-contested set.

Amorntep powered through the third set, coming up with powerful jump serves and devastating attacks to help move Nakhon Ratchasima ahead 22-18. Though South Gas put on a brave fight, their attempts were in vain as the home side went on their blistering run to win the set 25-21 for a commanding 2-1 lead.

Nakhon Ratchasima dominated the fourth set as they led from start to finish, utilising their impassable defence and spectacular attacks to capture the set 25-20.

After the match, Nakhon Ratchasima’s Amorntep Konhan said, “We are in a tough Pool A with strong teams working hard. However, I think the first match was not that good for us. In this match, we tried to improve our performance. Personally, I’m satisfied with the points I scored, but I want to do better next time. We worked hard and did our best, and today, we won. I would like to ask home fans to support our team in future matches.”