The training camp officially begins and the players ready themselves for the showdown against Nekoma. Surprising backstories of the upperclassmen are revealed and Ukai struggles with his decision on the official setter; in the end, he decides on Kageyama. Nekoma arrives in Miyagi and overwhelms in its practice matches while Hinata unknowingly meets its setter, who looks forward to playing against the first year. The match against Nekoma soon proves to be Karasuno's toughest one yet.
Hinata checks his calendar excitedly before heading out, thinking about how there are only four more days until the match against Nekoma. With a libero and an ace back on the team, Karasuno’s going to play much differently.
Later that day, Ukai tells the team the schedule and how much time they have left before Interhigh. He tells the members to keep practicing no matter what, and the members begin the day’s training. They go over all the basics, but Sugawara appears to be bothered about something.
At the end of practice, Karasuno heads to the facility they’re staying at for the training camp. Hinata checks out all the rooms, exclaiming excitedly that this is his first time at a training camp. Tanaka and Nishinoya are just as enthusiastic, assuming that Kiyoko would be staying with them. However, Sugawara quickly shoots them down by revealing that Kiyoko would be staying in her own home.
After a heavy dinner, Hinata goes to the bath, but stops when he notices something strange. Tanaka sees him in the hall and approaches him. Fearfully, Hinata reveals that there’s a stranger with them, but Tanaka confidently replies that they’re the only ones in the building. However, he begins to doubt himself when Hinata adds that it’s a child. As they’re trying to convince themselves that Hinata made a mistake, the said stranger appears behind them.
The "child" turns out to be Nishinoya, whose hair was flattened by the bath water, thus changing his appearance. As they’re scolding Hinata for his mistake, Asahi appears with a towel on his head. Shocked by his presence, the three scream and end up getting yelled at by Daichi.
The next day, the players head out for a run. Ukai and Takeda stay behind and comment on Hinata and Kageyama’s efforts. Noticing Ukai’s troubled expression, Takeda asks if he’s concerned about his decision on the official setter. Ukai affirms it and compares Kageyama’s natural talent with Sugawara’s experience. He reveals that he has so much trouble because he’s taking into account the fact that Sugawara’s a third year; when he was a third year, he went through the same anguish by having his spot stolen by a younger setter. However, he ultimately decides that as a coach, he can’t let his personal feelings dictate his choices.
Elsewhere, Hinata and Kageyama are racing each other when, completely engrossed in the competition, Hinata wounds up getting lost. While looking around for the others, he spots a boy in a red jersey sitting by the road. Curious, Hinata approaches him and finds out that the guy, Kenma, is lost as well. Suddenly, Hinata notices Kenma’s volleyball shoes and introduces himself as another volleyball player. He asks the latter if he likes volleyball and Kenma responds that he doesn’t care; he only plays it because of his friends. The first year then reveals that he’s a middle blocker and adds that it’s weird for someone so short to be one.
To his surprise, Kenma sympathizes and remarks that he’s in the same position. People would wonder why he’s the setter when he’s not talented or athletic. Hinata asks if his team is strong and Kenma responds that he thinks so. The confident look in his eyes shocks Hinata, who proceeds to question him on his school. Before Kenma can answer, he’s called away by a teammate. He leaves and tells the first year that he’ll see him later, confusing the latter.
Sugawara then appears around the corner, having looked everywhere for Hinata. As they’re heading back, Sugawara notes that Hinata practices a lot. The first year says that he wants to get strong enough so that he can be seen as an individual and not someone who has to rely on Kageyama. He states that he wants to stand on the court. Sugawara tells him that he also wants the same and will fight his own battles as well, though Hinata doesn’t understand what he means.
Elsewhere, a few spectators watch Nekoma play and note that the setter looks pretty small and unsteady. Kuroo appears behind them, defending Kenma as Nekoma’s brain and heart.
Back at the Karasuno facility, Sugawara goes to Ukai. He starts by explaining that the third years want the team to accomplish as much as it can before they leave. If Kageyama is the setter that can help make this possible, then he should be the official setter. However, Sugawara still wants to play so he asserts that he would train as the substitute in case anything happens to Kageyama. Ukai’s surprised by the third year’s forwardness, but assures him that he will do everything as the coach to enable Sugawara to play as much as he can. Unbeknownst to the two, Daichi and Asahi are hiding behind the corner, listening to every word. Daichi asserts that they will win as much as they can and Asahi agrees determinedly.
The next day, Ukai announces the starting order for the match against Nekoma with Kageyama as the setter. Afterwards, Nishinoya goes to Asahi and mentions Ennoshita and Sugawara not having a place in the lineup. Ennoshita quickly responds that he did quit once, surprising Hinata. Later that night, Hinata asks Ennoshita about what he said. He, Narita, and Kinoshita reveal that when the former Ukai returned last year, there were many, including them, who couldn’t handle the training and quit. However, they realized that they wanted to play, so they returned, but Ukai had already left by then. Despite that, they want to do their best in order to stand with everyone else on the court.
The next day, Kiyoko arrives at the gym with the uniforms. Hinata receives the number 10, but gets annoyed when he realizes Kageyama’s number 9. Daichi then reminds him about the Small Giant, who had the number 10 as well, encouraging Hinata. As practice begins, Takeda asks Ukai about Nekoma. The coach replies that Nekoma is a team with no outstanding power, but strong defense–the opposite of Karasuno. This match could be a tricky one for the team.
That night, at Nekoma’s dorm, Taketora bets a yakisoba bread that Karasuno doesn’t have a female manager while Inuoka and Shibayama disagree. Fired up by this possibility, Taketora opens the window and shouts outside. After Kuroo yells at him to shut up, Taketora asks Kenma for his opinion. Kenma doesn’t care about the managers but to everyone’s surprise, he admits that he's looking forward to the match.
Elsewhere, Hinata thinks of the Small Giant while staring at his uniform. He compares himself to Sugawara and the three second years who weren’t picked to be on the starting lineup, noting sternly that he can only play because of Kageyama’s toss.
The next day, the practice match begins. Karasuno and Nekoma line up in front of each other.
- Kenma Kozume
- Tetsurō Kuroo
- Nobuyuki Kai (name still unrevealed)
- Taketora Yamamoto
- Morisuke Yaku (name still unrevealed)
- Shōhei Fukunaga (name still unrevealed)
- Sō Inuoka (name still unrevealed)
- Yūki Shibayama (name still unrevealed)
- Shōyō Hinata
- Tobio Kageyama
- Daichi Sawamura
- Kōshi Sugawara
- Asahi Azumane
- Ryūnosuke Tanaka
- Kei Tsukishima
- Tadashi Yamaguchi
- Chikara Ennoshita
- Yū Nishinoya
- Hisashi Kinoshita
- Kazuhito Narita
- Ittetsu Takeda
- Keishin Ukai
- Natsu Hinata
- Small Giant (flashback only)
- Kiyoko lives near Karasuno High.
- When Ukai played in Karasuno High as a setter, he held the number 2.
- Ukai only played once as a setter in high school, but it was because the younger official setter couldn’t play (possibly because of an injury).
- Kenma dislikes the age statuses in athletics (it’s later revealed that this is because of his poor past experiences with his upperclassmen).
- Daichi, Asahi, and Sugawara have been playing together since their first year of high school.
- When the former Coach Ukai returned last year, a few players, including Ennoshita, Narita, and Kinoshita, quit the team. However, those three second years are the only ones who returned.
- Before Ukai’s return, Karasuno's boys' volleyball team was just a club for fun.
- The training camp goes from May 2nd to May 6th. May 6 is the practice match against Nekoma.
- The Karasuno uniforms were cleaned at Uchizawa Cleaning.
- Karasuno had never once defeated Nekoma in a match, even when the Small Giant was on the team.
Differences Between Anime and MangaEdit
- Manga: The characters are shown preparing for the training camp in several snippets. Nekoma then appears as it arrives at Tokyo Station. The scene cuts to a flashback of the old Coach Ukai and Coach Nekomata shaking hands. Back in the present, Hinata is riding his bike to school. Anime: Most of these scenes are skipped and the episode starts with Hinata biking to school. The flashback of Ukai and Nekomata doesn't come in until episode 12.
- Manga: Hinata and Tanaka are scared by Nishinoya in the hallway and as they're screaming, Daichi comes over to reprimand them. Anime: As Hinata and Tanaka are screaming at Nishinoya, Asahi appears and scares all three of them. Daichi is heard yelling at the entire group, but he doesn't come over. Nishinoya's hair also appears slightly shorter and thinner in the manga.
- Manga: After Nishinoya scares Tanaka and Hinata, the scene cuts straight to Hinata and Kageyama racing each other. Ukai goes along with the team and yells at Hinata to stop shouting. Anime: The members are shown practicing in the gym before heading out for a run. Takeda and Ukai comment on Hinata and Kageyama’s efforts before Takeda asks Ukai about his decision on the official setter. This scene isn’t shown until much later in the manga. Since Ukai doesn’t accompany the players on their run, it’s Daichi who yells at Hinata.
- Manga: When Kenma is first shown sitting on a small wall, he is by himself. Anime: a calico cat was shown sitting next to Kenma, a subtle hint that he was from Nekoma.
- Manga: After talking to Kenma, Hinata runs back to Karasuno High on his own. Anime: After Kenma left, Sugawara finds Hinata and runs back to Karasuno High with him. The two also have a chance to discuss their goals with each other.
- Manga: The players are shown practicing in the gym. Takeda asks Ukai about Nekoma. Elsewhere, Nekoma overwhelms Tsukinokizawa High while the spectators wonder what makes this team so strong. Anime: This doesn’t occur until much later and the team Nekoma plays against is Shirato High instead.
- Manga: After Sugawara talks to Ukai, he goes to Hinata to show him the tactics he came up with. Anime: It only shows Sugawara coming up with the tactics while in bed.
- Manga: Right after the second years reveal their story to Hinata and Kageyama, Hinata remarks to Kageyama that he’s troubled by the fact that he’s only on the court due to the setter and not because of his own abilities. Anime: This doesn’t occur until much later.