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09/04/2015 21:25
Germany claim semifinal spot after straight-set win over hosts Turkey, everything is set for thrilling semis
2015 CEV U19 Volleyball European Championship – Men

Sakarya, Turkey, April 9, 2015. On the last day of pool play at the 2015 CEV U19 Volleyball European Championship – Men Germany surprised the hosts from Turkey to sweep them from the top of Pool II with a crushing 3:0 victory and qualify for the semifinals. Turkey had already secured their ticket to the semis on Wednesday. The teams from Bulgaria and the Czech Republic - who edged Spain and Romania respectively - will fight for a World Championship ticket on Saturday after they missed the first two places in Pool II.

The semifinals of the 2015 CEV U19 Volleyball European Championship – Men will feature an all-sports classic between Germany and Italy on Saturday and the clash between the hosts from Turkey and the Polish giants, the only team that finished the preliminary round of #EuroVolleyU19M with a perfect record of five wins in as many matches. The eventual winners of the semifinal matches will have the chance to compete for the European crown on Sunday.

Another four teams – those that ended the pool phase in third and fourth place – still have the chance to get a ticket for the FIVB Volleyball Boys’ U19 World Championship in Argentina – the top six from the tournament make it there – and the European Youth Olympic Festival in Tbilisi, Georgia (this applies to the top seven of the final standing). The Czech Republic and Russia will face on Saturday late afternoon, while Bulgaria and Serbia will close the day with another intriguing duel between two neighbours and real Volleyball powers. All games will be broadcast live and for free on

Programme for Saturday, April 11 - All starting times are local (CEST+1)

Semifinals 1-4
Italy vs. Germany (12.00)
Poland vs. Turkey (14.30)

Semifinals 5-8
Russia vs. Czech Republic (17.30)
Serbia vs. Bulgaria (19.30)

You can also follow the Championship on Facebook and Twitter, with the official hashtag to be used for all of your posts and tweets being #EuroVolleyU19M.

Bulgaria vs. Spain 3:1 (25-15, 23-25, 25-12, 25-12)

Bulgaria dominated Spain in the first set. They started out with a seven point advantage at the first technical time out (8:1) and took on a benefit due to great blocks and a lot of Spanish faults in attack.  The Spanish team looked absolutely paralysed as well as confused in their action and showed many problems in reception. Only 24% of successful attacks and 23% success rate in reception weren’t enough to beat a Bulgarian team that went up to 20-11 and earned the first set balls at 24-15. A Spanish attack that only found the way into the net closed the beginner at 25-15.
Both teams were levelled in the beginning of the second chapter. Spain kept the pace with a faster way of playing to overpower the Bulgarian block and scored some nice points to 4-4. But it seemed that it was only the wakeup call for Bulgaria that increased the level of their performance immediately and took on the lead (10-6). The things changed as Spain closed the deficit at 14-14 to develop a well-balanced game till the crunch time. Two Spanish points in a row shocked Bulgaria after the easy start of the game, and Eduardo Alvarez Escudero made the last one at 25-23 to 1:1.
The spectators in Sakarya saw an absolutely great start in the third set with a motivated team from Spain searching for the chance to upset their pre-favourite opponent (5-5). Long rallies supported the high level as Bulgaria scored six consecutive points to move the score to 11-5. The team of emotional leader and coach Benjamin Vicedo wasn’t able to hold on with the speed of their opponents and had to accept a clear defeat after a huge block (12-25).
The fourth set went exactly the same way. Bulgaria was focused to finish it off and they did it without any problems at 25-12. Bulgarian top scorer was Plamen Shekerdzhiev with 22 points, followed by his teammates Stefan Ivanov and Radoslav Parapunov who scored both 18.

Dragan Ivanov, coach of Bulgaria: “All teams in our pool are very strong. That is why we lost the second set. The tension cost us that set. I am happy that we won the game. We did not finish our work in this tournament. Now we have to be spectators to learn our destiny. To get a ticket to the World Championship is our main goal if we do not get to play in the semifinals.”

Radoslav Parapunov, captain of Bulgaria: “We did what we had to do and won against Spain. Now we have to wait to see what will happen in the match of Turkey against Germany. We want to reach the semifinals.”

Benjamin Vicedo, coach of Spain: “It was our last match of the tournament but it wasn’t the way we wanted to end a European Championship. We played with a very bad reception and attack and had many problems to handle the Bulgarian serves. I am not happy with our performance here, we are able to play much better.”

Sergi Rene Giralt, captain of Spain: “We had the opportunity to stay alive in this tournament but it was not a good game again. I did not expect to leave after the preliminary round but one victory isn’t enough for a European Championship.”  

Turkey vs. Germany 0:3 (25-27, 28-30, 18-25)

Playing in front of the Bulgarian team that had to trust in the Turkish determination to keep alive their dream to make the semis, Germany started with good serves and troubled their opponent’s reception all the way through to the first technical time out (8-4). Against this Turkey made at least four mistakes in serves. However, the hosts closed the gap by serving their balls to Sven Winter who had big problems in reception, and an ace eventually led them up to 16-14. The game continued on a well-balanced level and high tension was to be perceived on both sides of the net. Germany couldn’t finish a thrilling crunch time (25-25) after three set balls, but eventually Corbin Balster converted the fourth one and took the lead for Germany at 27-25.
The second set started nearly the same way. Germany took an early advantage at 7-4 but four Turkish points in a row including one ace turned the scoreboard to 8-7. The run of the Turkish team troubled Germany from a psychological standpoint as another three aces found their way into the German field due to some misunderstandings (13-10). The score went up to 16-12 and 19-16 and it seemed that Germany wasn’t able to find a response, but two blocks performed by Maximilian Auste and Moritz Rauber brought them back on track (19-18). Again the decision was made in the crunch time. Germany fended off two set balls to gain a lead at 29-28 with setter Stefan Thiel ready for serving. And he found the way directly on the line to book the semi ticket for his team (30-28).
After securing their qualification for the semis, the Germans had some problems to step in the third set, and Turkey moved the score up to 8-5 at the second technical timeout. But within a short time the hosts lost their spirit and the control totally, so the Germans had no problems to raise the performance and the result to 22-16 and closed it out at 25-18. Best player of the game was Abdullah Cam who scored 18 points for Turkey, whilst Maximilian Auste and Corbin Balster topped the statistics for Germany with 15 points each.  

Matus Kalny, coach of Germany: “It was a very good game and an incredible performance of my players. They fought all the time and we earned every set in a hard way. We have nothing to lose in the semifinal against Italy. They are a good team but I think we have the chance to win it, too. There is no pressure on us anymore. We are in the semis and booked the ticket for the World Championship. This is a great feeling.”

Stefan Thiel, captain of Germany: “We become better and better after each game. You can see a development from the beginning until now. We gave everything we had to win the game, because it was our aim to end the group on the top position. The semifinal will be a hard game but there is of course a chance for a victory.”

Salih Erdoğan Tavacı, coach of Turkey: “We are very sad because of this defeat. Now we will play against Poland in the semifinal. We will prepare ourselves well during the day-off. We want to reach the final.”

Muzaffer Yönet, captain of Turkey: “We did not lose anything with this defeat, we are still in the semis. We did not perform well today. We will do our best in the semifinal to reach the final. I believe in my teammates. Everything will be better for us on Saturday.”

Romania vs. Czech Republic 1:3 (19-25, 24-26, 25-22, 14-25)

Czech Republic started the game really fast and took the early lead at 4-1 but Romania managed to level at 5-5. After it, the Czech Team scored three points in a row to reach the first technical timeout. Tomas Cermak’s serves caused problems to the Romanian defence to lead 16-13 at the second technical time out. In the end Romania wasn’t in the mode to response to the Czech attacks and lost the set 19-25. Both teams struggled in reception (Czech Republic 29%, Romania 20%) but the attack (%67) of the Czech Republic made the difference. It seemed that the east Europeans would manage it the fast way and gained a five point lead till the firs technical time out (8-3). The performances of both teams felt a little bit strange due to the meaning of the match, only Romania tried to close the deficit to make a dignified last game at the #EuroVolleyU19M. The result bounced to and fro till Czech Republic used an attack fault of their opponents and won the second set in a thrilling way 26-24. The third set started petty much as the first one. A well working block-defence system cared for a 8-4 lead for the Czech Republic. But the game didn’t take the development the spectators expected as Romania fought back and took on the advantage during the middle of the set (18-16). Surprisingly they were able to win the set at 25-22 due to a nice and fast attack from behind the line. It sounds crazy but again Czech Republic made a quick start in the beginning of the fourth set and took on a four point advantage at 5-1 which was closed as Romania’s best player and captain Robert Adrian Aciobanitei levelled it at 6-6. It should be one of his last points in that game because of a 10-2 run the Czech Teams started immediately after it (16-8). In the end the coach of the Czech Republic Jiri Zach used the advantage to change some players who brought it home at 25-14. Donovan Dzavoronok scored 18 points followed by his teammate Tomas Cermak with 15 points.

Jiri Zach, coach of Czech Republic: “We knew that this was a match where nothing can happen but I´m glad that we finished it with a win. Altogether I´m disappointed that we didn’t reach the semis but we will do everything against Russia to get the World Championship ticket. It will be a very difficult game and of course Russia is the favourite.“

Razvan Parpala, coach of Romania: “I think this championship was an important experience for us. Because it is the first time we participated this tournament. In the future we will be better and the experiences we had in Turkey will be useful for us.”

Click here for further information on Final Round of the 2015 CEV U19 Volleyball European Championship – Men

News nr. 7 of 42
09/04/2015 22:26:00
Italy overpower France to take last semifinal spot from Pool I, Poland keep on rolling
08/04/2015 22:57:00
Poland book ticket to semis with another outstanding performance

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