By Allan Akholms
The recent CAVC (Central Asian Volleyball Classic) saw fierce competition between several schools from across the region. The tournament saw participation from several teams, including boys and girls from both junior varsity and varsity categories. Among the schools, Tashkent emerged as the clear winner, with all four of its teams making it to the finals.
Despite tough competition, BIS performed exceptionally well, with the varsity boys’ team securing the third position and the girls’ team placing fourth. However, the highlight of the tournament was the intense game between BIS and Tashkent, where both teams played with great determination. Tashkent took the lead in the first set, but BIS came back stronger in the second set, ultimately losing in the third set.
BIS lost to Tashkent in the semi-finals but showed great resilience in their game against Tien Shan and secured the third position. The girls’ team also fought hard, securing 4th place in the event.
Despite the outcome, the BIS team showed great sportsmanship and enthusiasm throughout the tournament. The players also developed a new tradition of gathering and shouting “auf auf” after scoring a point, which proved to be a great morale booster. However, some say that the sportsmanship was not mutual, a word from a player of our team:
“Despite facing tough challenges and poor organisation from the event coordinators, our team persevered through multiple consecutive games without rest. While other teams had the luxury of time to recover, we were left unsupported, except for the cheers of our dedicated female teammates. It was unfortunate that we couldn’t even support each other during games given that the male and female games took place at the same time, unlike other teams that were blessed with benches full of supporters. Despite recieving hate in the form of trash talk, our focus remained on proving the naysayers wrong and silencing their criticisms. In the end, we knew that our actions spoke louder than their words.”
-Seung Min Paek
The tournament was hosted by one of the top schools in Central Asia, with state-of-the-art facilities. However, the tournament was not without its challenges, as the third day saw heavy snowfall of around 10-15 cm, and some rooms of the hotel were flooded due to a pipe burst on the fifth floor.
The BIS coach played a significant role in the team’s success, providing tactical guidance and unwavering support. Looking ahead, the team is determined to come back stronger next year and bring home the gold trophy.
In conclusion, the recent volleyball tournament held in Astana showcased the talents and perseverance of several schools from the region. Despite facing challenges and lacking support, the BIS team exhibited great sportsmanship and resilience, securing respectable positions in both varsity categories. With the guidance of their coach and determination to improve, the team is motivated to return stronger next year.