Head Coach of the Volta Regional Handball Association, Otis Dodzi Ahorse, has described his side’ 3rd place achievement at the handball competition of the just-ended National Sports Festival in Kumasi as determination on the part of the players.
The team which had begun a league in the South Tongu District and yet to begin the Ho league, had only two days training after a one-day justifier on Monday, August 28.
The team left Ho, the regional capital, last week Thursday, and had to play the opening matches on Friday, September 1, 2017.
The men lost 21-23 to Eastern and went ahead to win the rest of their matches 24-17 to Western, 33-23 to Upper East and 34-30 to Ashanti.
They however, lost the second semi-final, 26-16 to Greater Accra and came third after beating Central 33-27.
Greater Accra eventually grabbed gold as they triumphed 23-15 over Eastern.
The women also won bronze after beating Ashanti 22-13 in the third place match, played on Wednesday, September 6, 2017. Their build-up also saw a loss in their first group game (19-10) to Greater Accra, but won 24-3 against Brong-Ahafo, 22-16 to Upper East and 17-9 to Western.
The determined women unfortunately had their winning streak cut out after losing the first semi-final 21-18 to Central. Nothing could however, be taken away from Greater Accra who are currently playing a league, winning again in the women final 21-17 against Central.
Speaking to the media after the National Sports Festival, coach Dodzi Ahorse said: “The players did well because preparation wasn’t enough. We trained only twice after the justifier on Monday. The guys were however, determined and they have made it to the 3rd position. It was quiet difficult achieving the third position because we met teams that had enough preparation. Central had their justifier during the time of the schools and colleges’ games and beating them showed how determined my players were.”
Otis, who teaches Physical Education at Jasikan College of Education (JASICO), also appealed to the regional minister, the Volta regional coordinating council and other stakeholders to come to their aid.
“Preparation actually wasn’t the best and I will appeal to the regional minister, the regional coordinating council and those that are in authority, at least to come to our aid as far as the development of sports in the region was concerned, otherwise we will not get there as we will be anticipating.”
The sports festival, which used to be Unity Games and was last held 2011, has been brought back, but its maiden edition was ill-organised in terms of finance.
Contingents were asked to prepare without funding, causing many of the regions to underperform.
Next year’s event is scheduled to come off in the Central region, at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium.