17/08/2013 22:00
Two Polish duos qualify for the semis in Varna
2013 CEV U22 Beach Volleyball European Championship

Varna, Bulgaria, August 17, 2013.  The first three elimination rounds of the 2013 CEV U22 Beach Volleyball European Championship presented by Mtel have been completed and tomorrow’s semi finals on Yuzhen beach in Varna have been set.  At the end of an emotional day full of exciting battles Poland ended up as the only country with two teams still in contention for continental honors.
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Despite finishing third in their Pool B, Norway’s Lars Fredrik Tvinde/Hendrik Nikolai Mol were able to string three consecutive wins today to make it among the best four teams.  After winning their Round 1 match with a tie-breaker set against Wessel Keemink/Dirk Boehlé from the Netherlands, the Norwegians shut out Croatia’s Mate Glaurdic/Niksa Dellorco and Russia’s Ruslan Bykanov/Vasili Andrianov.  In the first semi final tomorrow, Tvinde/Mol will have to face Poland’s Maciej Kosiak/Maciej Rudol.  First, the Poles had to knock out their compatriots Bartlomiej Malec/Pawel Pelka in straight sets. Then, they defeated Austria’s Lorenz Petutschnig/Tobias Winter by 2:0 (23-21, 21-19) in a very tough clash that lasted 43 minutes.  ”It was a very hard match,” Maciej and Maciej said. ”We lost our last three matches against this team.  Now we are just happy and think about tomorrow. We think only about our next match and not about the tournament.  The semi final comes first and then we hope it will be the final.”
For the other Polish team, three-time world champions Bartosz Losiak/Piotr Kantor, everything seems to be like a breeze.  They have reached the semi finals without losing a single set so far.  It took them 25 minutes to go through their Round 2 game and another 33 minutes to make their way through Round 3.  Then they had some free time to watch their potential opponents who engaged in an epic battle for the last semi final spot.  Both sets between Germany’s Bennet Poniewaz/David Poniewaz and Switzerland’s Mirco Gerson/Gabriel Kissling were very dramatic, went into overtime and offered great excitement for the fans. After 46 minutes of play time the German brothers emerged as winners with a final score of 2:0 (22-20, 29-27).  ”This is our first semifinal and it is incredible!  It was a great match, we played good block-defense and we are very happy that we won,” the Poniewaz brothers stated emotionally.  ”We found their weaknesses and made a good match plan which worked.  From tomorrow’s matches we want a medal, a gold medal.”
On the women’s side, the Round 3 fixture between the Czech team of Hana Tresnáková/Eliška Gálová and Katharina Schützenhöfer/Lena Plesiutschnig from Austria was the most exciting match of the day. The tie-breaker was a real rollercoaster.  In the conclusive moments Austria scored 4 points in a row to turn things around from 10-13 to 14-13.  However, Schützenhöfer/Plesiutschnig failed to capitalize on two match points and the Czechs took the chance to claim the victory by 2:1 (21-18, 19-21, 17-15).  In the first women’s semi final on Saturday, Tresnáková/Gálová will meet the Swiss team Nina Betschart/Anouk Vergé-Dépré, who have yet to lose a set in this tournament.  Even their Round 3 match against Germany’s Kim Behrens/Sandra Seyfferth look like a pleasant walk on the beach for them and they shut out their opponents by 2:0 (21-10, 21-15) in 33 minutes.  “I have a really good partner, so how we play as a team depends on me,” Nina admitted after the game.  ”I am really glad that we have been successful so far.  I think we have a good block-defense system which is our strongest weapon.”
The only sets that Ukraine’s Maryna Samoday/Elizaveta Sulima have lost so far in the competition were the two against Germany’s Christine Aulenbrock/Anna Behlen in Pool B.  Today Samoday/Sulima achieved two straight-set victories to earn another chance to face Aulenbrock / Behlen again in Round 3. This time they defeated their opponents by 2:0 (21-12, 21-18) in 32 minutes to set themselves for a semi final clash with Spain’s Angela Lobato Herrero/Paula Soria Gutiérrez.  The Spanish girls have also maintained a perfect record of 10 to 0 sets in their five matches so far.  This is what Angela said after her team beat Agata Oleksy/Jagoda Gruszczynska from Poland by 2:0 (21-16, 21-15) in Round 3: ”This is a dream for us.  We have trained for it all year and we are so happy.  Now we are dreaming to continue winning tomorrow.  Everything in Varna is great – the people, the food, the beach...”
The 2013 CEV U22 Beach Volleyball European Championship is streamed live on here.
Click here for more detailed information on the championship.

News nr. 3 of 9
18/08/2013 14:00:00
Yachts, body art and beauty contests raise the excitement in Varna
16/08/2013 23:00:00
Two Bulgarian teams please the home crowd by making it to the next round

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