After 8 straight years playing in PlusLiga, Poland’s premier volleyball league, Dafi Społem Kielce was relegated from it with still a few games left to play, as the team lost its match against Skra Belchatow 3-2. The fact was very bittersweet for every Kielce player, staff, and fan involved, as the team put up a great effort against the league’s runner ups and one of the premier teams in the world.
Dariusz Daszkiewicz, the team’s coach, commented on why he thinks his team was good enough to play as equals against such powerful squads at times, and at others, to play so weakly to the point of being relegated (Siatka.org):
“It is a pity that after such a match and in such circumstances we bid farewell to PlusLiga. We played a really good match even though we had some players missing. My players played with a huge will to fight and, above all, very calmly, because there were very few mistakes in the offensive end. We had a big psychological problem the whole season, which was evident in these difficult games in which we could not cope with the opponent. Today we played against a great team, but we played them as equals. We lost 2:3, 13:15 in the tie-break, feeling no pressure, and it was clearly one of the reasons that helped us. We showed in this meeting good volleyball, something we will try to replicate in our last matches.”
Also, after the loss, and just like former Kielce player Mateusz Bieniek had recently expressed, Dariusz talked about his fears for the future of Kielce volleyball:
“I think you have to see what will happen next. A few smart brains must gather and come up with what to do next with Kielce volleyball. It is very sad for me. I came here in December with the thought of trying to save this team, hoping that we would be able to save this PlusLiga season. Unfortunately, it failed and now you have to think what next. Very few people realize how hard it was to build this volleyball team, how hard everyone had to fight each day to keep volleyball in Kielce for so many years.”
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