Amaco international volleyball tournament organiser, Paul Bitok, is confident of the annual competition’s sustained growth after record crowds witnessed this year’s edition in Eldoret last weekend.
Equally, a record number of 83 teams showed up at the Eldoret Polytechnic, up from last year’s 73.
Kenya Defence Forces and Kenya Prisons won the men’s and women’s titles, respectively, in Sunday’s well-attended finals.
“This is the biggest event ever — 83 teams are in attendance while last year we had 73 — and this year, we also have two American teams,” said Bitok, who recently stepped down as Rwanda’s national coach.
The American teams — Salt Factory Sports and Baylor — featured as among the four invited foreign sides, the other two coming from Uganda.
“People thought this region’s fans only follow athletics and this is a testimony and I would encourage the county to build a facility that can be used to develop the sport in the region,” added Bitok.
Salt Factory Sports captain Krista Degeest said they were surprised by the huge turnout.
“I did not know what to expect when I came, but the tournament is great. I would say the challenge is very close; some of these girls can fit in big teams in America,” said Degeest.
However, due to challenges in travel logistics, the two US-based did not play their quarter-final matches.
Esther Mutinda of Kenya Pipeline was crowed Best Women Server, while her team mate Lucy Meta emerged as the Best Setter.
Pamela Masaisi bagged the Most Valuable Player title while in the men’s category, Dicken Otim from Uganda was crowned the Best Blocker with Daniel Kiptoo of Kenya Prions emerging as the Best Setter and Solomon Bitok the Best Server.
Maxwell Kiprono bagged the Most Valuable Player and Evans Makuto of Kenya Prisons was the Best Attacker.