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Malory Eagles volleyball club

National Cup Final
Malory Eagles vs London Polonia
Saturday 24 April, Crystal Palace Sports Centre

Echoing the words of Bachman Turner Overdrive, “You ain’t seen nothing yet” proclaimed Malory Eagles chairman David Jenkinson as he celebrated the team’s fantastic double.  Malory’s men have notched up 35 national division one and cup titles in just 24 years, a record unrivalled in UK volleyball.

The excited Crystal Palace crowd were treated to a display of pure confidence as Malory held, subdued and then deflated the hopeful Polonia squad.  “We just didn’t turn up today”, lamented Polonia coach Krzys Hykiel, disappointed at his team’s performance.  In a match that failed to ignite, Polonia appeared overawed by the occasion perhaps suffering from the inexperience of its players in big finals.  In contrast, Malory appeared relaxed and poised as they warmed up, no doubt lifted by the large and noisy group of Eagles supporters.

The 3-0 scoreline (25-17, 25-17, 25-22) perhaps short-changed the crowd but showed just how dominant Malory Eagles are.  With young stars Marc Richardson and Darius Setsoafia only in 2nd gear, it was a slew of first set mistakes from the West Londoners that gave Malory a comfortable one set lead.  Setter and captain Richard Dobell was once again majestic as he confounded the Polonia block, compensating for inconsistent attacking by giving his players repeated “one-on-ones”.  The second set saw an improvement with Polonia reducing their errors while Malory’s attacking machine upped a gear.  By set three, Malory were comfortable, inwardly confident that they would leave Crystal Palace with the 2010 Cup.  Polonia, though less nervous, failed to capitalise on the opportunities offered them by Malory, perhaps unable to settle even when Hykiel called upon 3rd setter Gregorz Niski to try to give his side an edge.  Though Polonia threatened to claw back towards the game’s twilight, a Malory victory was never in doubt.

Coach Jefferson Williams was reflective, “I’m thrilled by this victory especially after our poor performance last year.  The victory ended what I called our ‘Redemption Season’ and I am pleased with the way our young players handled themselves.”

At the club’s post-match celebration, little Eagles fans jostled to get the autographs of their heroes who towered above the youngsters signing tickets and programmes.

“I’m speechless.” confessed Luciano Pinter “Double crown in my first season, I’m very, very happy.  I’ve had the honour to play with great volleyball players.”

Steven Fee was equally elated “I've loved being part of the Malory machine these past 11 years.  Richard, Alex [Bialokoz] and Jefferson have been inspirational through their leadership, friendship and achievement.  The Cup Final was simply an example of the domination they have been at the centre of for two decades.”

Williams is looking forward to the future, “Today was a perfect beginning to what will hopefully be a dominant period for Malory Eagles, roll on 2010/11.”

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