On the back of 4 previous wins Tendring were feeling confident about their match against a strong Black Country side, both teams started well and points were traded all the way through to the first technical timeout where Tendring lead 8 point to 7. This lead gave them confidence and captain Stuart Dove gave an impressive hitting display along with Constantinos Yiannakkos producing a comfortable 5 point advantage going into the second technical. Black Country came out of the timeout a different side producing good defensive and attacking displays, this combined with too many unforced errors from Tendring meant that the score had been made equal at 18 all forcing coach Porter to make a timeout. Unfortunately for the Tendring side they could not find their rhythm meaning that more errors were made causing Black Country to take the first set 25-23. 

Frustrated by the loss of the first set Tendring came onto the court firing on all cylinders with setter Camera Rhodes distributing the ball to his attackers well, Black Country could not provide an answer to this giving Tendring an early lead which they held past the first and second technical timeouts. Towards the back end of the set it seemed that Tendring could not be stopped, a strong passing display from Rob Chilcoat, Yiannakkos and Jack Bruce meant that all 3 front court hitting options were available which increased their lead to 19-11. This meant that coach Porter was able to give the youngest player in Saturdays squad Nash his second appearance in division 1, he did not disappoint making a strong block giving Tendring confidence to finish the set at 25-18.

In the third set Black Country seemed to increase their service pressure making it a tough start to the set for the service reception unit of Tendring, this and a spell of unforced errors meant that Black Country were beginning to take the lead. Continual errors being made on Tendring’s part allowed the opposition to further storm ahead leading at the second technical by 6 points. It seemed that Tendring had fought back after the timeout as an impressive run of 7 points was accumulated making the score 17-16 to Tendring. This lead did not last long and Black Country quickly responded with increased service pressure and strong defence which meant they took the third set 25-22. 

Coach Porter was forced to make a change to the line-up of the Tendring side bring on setter Nick Davies, This however was not enough as Black Country were up 8-5 at the first technical timeout. Despite their best efforts Tendring were unable to find their rhythm and make the 3 point lead of Black Country back by the second technical timeout. Further unforced errors allowed Black Country to gain confidence making it hard for Tendring to make a comeback, making it Tendring’s first loss of the season and a final set score of 25-16.

MVP Konstantinos Yiannakkos