When tossing and smashing a sometimes white and sometimes striped ball around a court, with a net hanging in the middle, you get a game called Volleyball. Wrapped with lots of thrill and glory, Volleyball is a game of endurance, strength, agility and a lot more than that, commitment. And these traits could be vividly seen in the budding volleyball champs of A.V.M., who recently participated in the CBSE West Zone Cluster XIII – Inter School Tournament 2019-20 held at Shree Swaminarayan Mission school in the under 17 and 19 categories. Under the exceptional coaching of Ritesh Sir, Naresh Sir and Hitesh Sir, both the teams, consisting of 12 players each, received full-fledged training and practice. Despite the fact that the practice time was limited to two hours / day, this did not suppress the burning zeal of these young enthusiasts to set out for victory. Countless smashes and blocks, various guarding and rotation tips and with all their might, these players burnt up the last of their calories to perfect their style and sharpen their skills. Three weeks of sheer hardwork and sacrifice of free time paved the way of these robust individuals to succeed in their endeavour. And to top it up was the professional and devotional touch of Ritesh Sir and our coaches that strengthened each player’s position, confidence and drive for triumph.

16th October 2019 marked the beginning of the 4–days knockout tournament, in which a total of 55 teams from various schools participated.

Following are the results of the U-17 Group:

1st Match        AVM vs Radiant English Academy, Surat (2-0)

2nd Match       AVM vs St. Ann’s School, Ahmedabad (2-0)

Quarter Final  AVM vs P. P. Savani School, Ankleshwar (2-0)

Semi-Finals     AVM vs Vatsalya International School, Borsad (3-2)

This was probably the most consistent U-17 winning spree in the history of AVM.

In the semi-finals, due to a strong resistance exerted by the opponent team, who were more skilled than us, our team lost the momentum on the onset by losing the first two sets. Usually, in these depressing situations, players tend to lose hope and give up. But fortunately, that was not the case with AVM players. They retained their enthusiasm and in fact, rose up to make a spirited come back. All the coaches and other substitutes encouraged with their loudest of cheers as these hardy souls won the next three sets.

Finals               AVM vs Shree Swaminarayan Mission, Surat (0-3)

After a long journey of setbacks and elevations, AVM finally reached the finals of the Under-17 category. A large crowd had gathered to watch this final match played between AVM and Shree Swaminarayan Mission. This time around, there was a twist of fortune for AVM. In the bold attempt to defeat the lion in its own den, AVM lost the first three sets with close margins (23-25), (23-25) and (19-25) and secured the Silver medal in the under-17 category.

Following are the results of the U-19 Group:

1st Match        AVM vs Tirupati International School, Surendranagar (2-0)

2nd Match       AVM vs Maharaja Agrasen School, Surat (1-2)

The event finally ended with a grand ceremony, wherein all the under-17 team members of AVM were honoured with their medals and certificates. Adding icing on the cake, Yogibhai from our team also received “the best smasher of the tournament” award in the under-17 category.

Overall, it was a splendid tournament for AVM with achievements and experiences that will serve to inspire the upcoming players.

Reported by: Nirman Jaiswal (Class 10)