QATAR’S El Jaish fought hard before going down 25-27, 28-26, 25-21, 21-25, 13-15 to Bahrain’s Al Ahli in the final of 35th Arab Clubs Volleyball Championship in Manama on Tuesday.
This is Jaish’s best-ever performance in the championship, surpassing the third-place finish in 2015 in Egypt.
The Armymen, who had won all their group matches, beat Algeria’s formidable GS Petroliers 36-34, 27-25, 25-22 in the quarterfinal and Oman’s Al Salam 25-23, 25-15, 25-21 in the last four. However Ahli proved a tough nut to crack in the final at their own backyard.
Meanwhile, the other Qatari club in the fray, former league champions Al Rayyan, finished third by beating Al Salam 25-23, 25-20, 23-25, 25-17 in play-off.
Rayyan had also maintained a clean sheet in the group stage and beat Saudi Arabia’s Al Wahda 16-25, 25-19, 25-14, 25-16 in the quarterfinal before going down 23-25, 17-25, 20-25 to eventual champions Al Ahli in the semifinal.
This is Rayyan’s second podium finish in the championship history. They were runners-up in the 2012 edition held in Lebanon.