May 21 2013 Latest news:
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Group A Team GB womens volleyball seal first Olympic win in five-set thriller against Algeria (22-25, 25-19, 23-25, 25-19, 15-8).
Bromley’s Janine Sandell helped Team GB to a memorable victory in the early hours of this morning against the higher ranked opponents Algeria at Earls Court.
The match went into a fifth set as the 69th ranked, self-funded Brits saw off a team 53 places higher in the world rankings.
Team GB marched into an early lead in the opening set and at the first break of play GB held an 8-4 lead.
Just as the host nation moved to within five points of the set, Algeria came back strong and edged the set 25-22.
However, undeterred by the first set loss, GB started the second in good fashion, moving 7-4 in front.
GB put themselves in pole position and at the second technical time out there was a four-point advantage for the women.
They looked determined not to let another opportunity pass them by as Team GB moved to within two points at 23-19.
The tension didn’t materialise as Ciara Michel’s block handed them set point, and skipper Lynne Beattie’s fine serve gave them their first set in Olympic history.
Bromley-born Sandell was producing her best and helped Team GB to another two points with a great double spike for an early third-set lead.
But for the first time in the match Algeria lead at the first time-out, albeit a slender 8-7.
Just like the second set, the third was a tight affair throughout with a point separating the sides more often then not.
Ciara Michel’s spike put Team GB ahead at 22-21 and a fine serve from Gemma Taylor moved them further ahead before an Algerian time-out led to a revival to leave things evenly poised.
But Algeria edged it 25-23 and Team GB would have to produce another comeback.
Excellent play from Sandell put them into a 7-3 set four lead, with four consecutive points for the host nation.
At the second technical time-out there was a seven-point lead at 16-9 and GB managed to hold their nerve to take the set 25-19 and Sandell sealed the fourth set.
The fifth and final set is a shoot-out to 15 points and Team GB moved into an early 3-0 lead thanks to Sandell’s serve which extend her tally to 14 points for the match.
And as they changed ends they held an 8-3 advantage, and they moved to within five points with the score at 10-7.
The tension was raised at match point and Sandell saw them home with a fine serve to write themselves into Olympic history books.
Now, can that give the mens team hope for tomorrow night against Australia? Only time will tell.