Uttar Pradesh men and Kerala women emerged champions in the 14th National youth volleyball championship at the West Bengal Volleyball Association courts here on Monday.
Recovering from a set down, Uttar Pradesh quelled the challenge of Kerala 15-25, 25-20, 25-23, 25-21 in 95 minutes to retain the crown.
Kerala retained the title for the fourth time, outplaying West Bengal 25-12, 25-20, 25-16 in just 51 minutes. This was Kerala's 12th title overall.
Tamil Nadu third
Tamil Nadu won the Hardliner's Trophy, defeating Karnataka in the men's section and Haryana in the women's category.
Kerala's fast-paced game unsettled UP in the first set. The set was over even before UP could devise a way to tackle its opponent.
The defending champion steadied itself in the second, using the double block to great effect. Combining some smart defensive work in the back-court, the UP players produced some telling smashes, especially its captain Nikhilesh Mishra and Saurabh Singh, who gave a harrowing time to the Kerala blockers.
It took the second set and led throughout the third and fourth before winning the title with aplomb.
Captain Muhammad Mirshad and Sajay Sanjeev and libero T. Prathapan tried their best, but it was simply not Kerala's day.
The Kerala women proved too good for West Bengal in the summit clash. The host fielded mostly the junior National champion side players while Anusri Ghosh was the lone player from the senior team.
The results: Men: Final: Uttar Pradesh bt Kerala 15-25, 25-20, 25-23, 25-21; Third place: TN bt Karnataka 20-25, 25-20, 17-25, 25-21, 15-10.
Women: Final: Kerala bt West Bengal 25-12, 25-20, 25-16; Third place: TN bt Haryana 25-23, 25-11, 25-22.
Keywords: volleyball championship