The 16th edition of the Imchaba Master Memorial Nagaland Open Volleyball Trophy 2023 commenced with enthusiasm at the Multi-Purpose Sports Complex in Mokokchung on 19 September. Organized by the Mokokchung District Volleyball Association (MDVA), this much-awaited tournament promises to showcase Nagaland’s finest volleyball talent until Friday, 22 September.
Nineteen teams from across the state converged to vie for this year’s championship. The opening day saw fierce competition with 14 league matches, all contested in a best-of-three match format.
In the opening clash, Chienino Brothers from Kiruphema, Kohima, outshone Spartan Club from Lakhuni, securing a victory with scores of 25-16 and 25-22. The day continued to deliver thrilling encounters:
Changtongya Volleyball Association-A triumphed over Tongden Club-B with scores of 25-16 and 25-22.
Evergreen Club, Ungma, engaged in an intense battle with Fazl Ali College, eventually prevailing with scores of 29-27 and 25-16.
Kumlong Sporting Association put up a valiant effort against defending champions MH10 Kohima but narrowly lost with scores of 27-25 and 25-23.
Newcomers Ozumi Volleyball Team displayed their prowess, outclassing United Changki with scores of 26-24 and 25-16.
Archippus Club Dimapur secured their first win against Rongpang Club Tzurangkong with scores of 25-13 and 25-18.
Peren District Volleyball Association narrowly defeated Tongden Club A with scores of 25-19 and 25-23.
Another newcomer, G Sport Mokokchung, exhibited their skill by defeating Spartan Club Lakhuni with scores of 25-16 and 25-17.
In an exciting encounter, JN Aier Memorial Club Yajang C triumphed over Evergreen Club Ungma, winning the deciding set 15-11.
In Match 11, defending champions MH-10 reaffirmed their dominance by defeating FAC in straight sets with scores of 25-7 and 25-19.
Match 12 witnessed a surprise as crowd favorite Longsa Sporting Club fell to the new entrants Ozumi Volleyball Team. Ozumi claimed the victory with scores of 25-16, 23-25, and 15-13 in the deciding set.
In the 13th match, United Changki secured their position with a straight-set victory over Rongpang Club Tzurangkong, winning 25-17 and 25-15.
In the 14th and final match of the day, Changtongya Volleyball Association B secured their first win by defeating Kumlong Sporting with scores of 25-22 and 25-22.
The Imchaba Master Memorial Nagaland Open Volleyball Trophy is celebrated as a pinnacle event in the volleyball community. This year’s champion will be awarded a generous cash prize of Rs 80,000, along with a perpetual trophy and certificates. The first runner-up will receive a cash prize of Rs 50,000, and the third and fourth runners-up will be awarded Rs 30,000 and Rs 20,000, respectively. Additionally, individual awards will honor outstanding performances.
The inaugural program featured Col Rahul Gurung, Kirti Chakra, Commandant of the 12th Assam Rifle in Mokokchung, who served as the inaugural patron. In his address, he commended MDVA for providing a platform for budding talents and emphasized the importance of hard work, talent, and family support in reaching sports excellence. Col Rahul Gurung encouraged players to emulate the legacy of the legendary Dr T Ao in the field of sports.
Earlier in the program, Lakhi Longkumer, Convenor, Organizing Committee, delivered the welcome address.