01/07/2018 17:11
Russian domination at #EuroBeachVolleyU20 with double gold for home teams
2018 CEV U20 Beach Volleyball European Championship

Anapa, Russia, July 1, 2018.  The 2018 CEV U20 Beach Volleyball European Championship has come to an end on Sunday with the Russian teams’ domination in both the men’s and women’s Finals. Home stars Mariia Bocharova and Maria Voronina claimed their third age-group continental title in 10 months - retaining the U20 crown they won last year in Vulcano shortly after standing on top of the podium of the U18 tournament.

Denis Shekunov/Dmitrii Veretiuk (RUS) crowned themselves champions of the Men’s tournament after a 2-0 (21-14, 21-19) victory over Paul Nicole/Timothée Platre (FRA). This is their first European crown after last year Shekunov claimed bronze at the U18 European Championship in Kazan - but with a different partner. The French will go home with the silver medals, while 2017 U18 European champions Pavel Shustrov/Alexey Gusev (RUS) grabbed the bronze following a 2-0 (21-18, 21-17) victory over Paolo Cappio/Jakob Windisch (ITA) in the “small final”.

How many Russian teams would reach the Men’s Final? This was the implicit question in the air on Sunday.
In the first semifinal the Russian team Shekunov/Veretiuk won the match vs. the Italians Cappio/Windisch in two sets (21-11, 21-12) without too much of an effort. In the other semifinal, the  French team Nicole/Platre prevailed over Shustrov/Gusev 2-1 (18-21, 30-28, 16-14).

Beach Volleyball fans in Anapa had the possibility to enjoy the final match between Shekunov/Veretiuk and Nicole/Platre. In the early beginning, the Russian team took the initiative but their opponents tried to reduce the point difference. However, thanks to excellent blocking skills, the Russians prevented the French team from posing a real threat. The second set unfolded with both teams showing their best performance in the different aspects of the game, being very motivated and displaying much fighting spirit. The Russian team was, however, more successful in the end and emerged victorious at 2-0 (21-14, 21-19).   

Denis Shekunov, newly crowned European champion from Russia: “We fought until the end and we did it. I am so happy!”

2017 U18 European champion and eventual bronze medallist in Anapa, Alexey Gusev said that he was not entirely happy with this result: “We lost and we couldn’t reach the Final. We are disappointed about this. We could show a better result."

In the women's tournament Mariia Bocharova/Maria Voronina (RUS) took the Gold, winning 2-0 (21-13, 21-8) against Julia Gierczynska/Patrycja Jundzill of Poland. Winning this tournament, Bocharova and Voronina proved once again to be the strongest women’s team in under-age Beach Volleyball competitions, retaining the title they won last year in Vulcano. In the match for the Bronze, Esmée Böbner/Sibelly Gilardi (SUI) edged Martina Maixnerova/Marie-Sara Stochlova (CZE) 2-0 (21-19, 21-19).

On their path to the success, Bocharova/Voronina firstly won the match vs. Maixnerova/Stochlova from Czech Republic (2-0; 21-15, 30-28) while Gierczynska/Jundzill had edged Böbner/Gilardi in the other semi-final (2-1; 21-14, 16-21, 15-10).

The Final match was a real showdown. In the first set both teams showed their big wish to grab the gold medals but the Russian team could establish a comfortable lead and save it until the end of the set. In the second emotional section of the game, Bocharova/Voronina demonstrated their best skills and their ability to block and serve excellent. Mariia Bocharova put an end to the fight for the Gold medal by scoring an ace and making a dream come true, securing a 21-13, 21-8 victory.

In claiming back-to-back European titles, Voronina and Bocharova equalled the feat achieved by Nina Betschart/Nicole Eiholzer (SUI) in 2013 and 2014 and by Nika Daalderop/Joy Stubbe (NED) in 2015 and 2016.

Maria Voronina (RUS): “We are very happy that we could win the gold medals once again. It was very difficult but we managed to cope with everything and win. We worked hard to achieve our aim, which was taking the title."

Dmitry Fedotov, head Coach of the Russian Youth Women’s National team: “When we win medals, we have many positive emotions. This #EuroBeachVolleyU20 was a priority for us because we played it on our home sand. We prepared for every single match, we trained a lot and we now see the results – we are successful. I would like to thank all of our fans for their support."

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News nr. 1 of 6
30/06/2018 20:13:00
Semi-finalists become known at #EuroBeachVolleyU20

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