Kurume — Malkia Strikers libero Aggripina Kundu survived a barrage of missile attacks from a cocktail of coaches at the national women’s volleyball team training session here on Tuesday.
A team of six Brazilian tacticians seconded to the Kenyan team by the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB), along with legendary Kenyan coach Paul Bitok, were testing her acumen in service reception.
And she emerged unscathed, her experience clearly showing and offering hope for Malkia Strikers ahead of their opening Olympic Games match against hosts Japan in Tokyo on Sunday, July 25.
The 28-year-old Kenya Pipeline Volleyball Club star says gym sessions and a bit of weights have played in Malkia Strikers’ favour.
“We did a lot of gym work to strengthen our upper and lower body and this has made the team strong, and our opponents will certainly feel the heat,” says Kundu who made her Malkia Strikers debut at the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations tournament.
She loves ugali and managu, and was pleasantly surprised when the Kenyan staple of ugali was made available at the team hotel here.
“I’m very happy to find ugali here… I feel at home… it could have been war if I didn’t find ugali here!”
The 65-kilogramme libero is full of praise for the pool of Brazilian coaches seconded to Malkia Strikers.
“They have helped us a lot, especially in gym work because we used to train in the gym randomly, but they have come up with a great, specific gym programme.”
Kundu is confident of a great show against hosts Japan on July 25: “There are no fans in the stadiums and so when we play against Japan in our opening match, we will be on the same footing and I’m sure we shall show them dust!”