Kolkata Thunderbolts continued their dominance in match 10 of the RuPay Prime Volleyball League Powered by A23 Season 2, beating Kochi Blue Spikers 4-1 (15-9, 15-11, 15-14, 15-11, 12-15) to strengthen their position at the top of the points table.

To say Kolkata were dominant right from the start would be a sheer understatement. The team has anyway been in excellent form this season and the momentum was evident as the team started off by going into an 11-5 lead in the first set.

As it turns out, the second set was no different. Thanks to a series of back-to-back spikes, Kolkata managed to go from 2-2 to 11-8 in the second set. The defending champions’ sheer dominance was made viable in the fourth set when the team, thanks to a couple of blocks and spikes, managed to go into a 5-0 lead.

Kochi Blue Spikers did try to make a comeback, but it was just too little too late.

Kolkata Thunderbolts are the favourites to defend their title

Kolkata have won a whopping 11 sets out of a possible 15 in three games they have played so far this season. This takes their set ratio to 2.7. This figure is only bettered by Calicut Heroes, although it must be remembered that they have played a game less than Kolkata Thunderbolts.

Meanwhile, the match against Kochi Blue Spikers was just another example of the kind of damage Kolkata are capable of inflicting. All this makes one thing pretty clear: Kolkata are in perfect condition to defend their title this year.

Ashwal Rai’s key to success

Kolkata’s opening game of the new season saw Vinit Kumar wreaking havoc against Bengaluru Torpedoes. Their second outing, against Hyderabad Black Hawks, was all about the same man, but the combination changed against Kochi Blue Spikers. This time, it was Rahul K’s turn. The 24-year-old outside hitter combined brilliantly with his teammates as Kochi had no answers to his spikes.

Assessing the situation, Kolkata captain Ashwal Rai simply said, “We trust each other and that’s the key to our success.” The chemistry between the outside hitters was evident from the start and it comes as no surprise that the team hardly broke a sweat to get the win.

It’s going to take a lot for Kochi to bounce back

Sunday’s defeat at the hands of Kolkata Thunderbolts was Kochi Blue Spikers’ second consecutive loss in the competition. This means the team now acquires the last spot in the standings and are the only team who are yet to win a game.

It’s a given that following a string of bad results, it will take more than a lot for the team to make a comeback. The good thing, however, remains the fact that they can aim for a fresh start as the competition now moves to Hyderabad.