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18/02/2019 21:00
Two members of Slovenian Volleyball family awarded national sport prizes
News from the National Federations

Brdo pri Kranju, Slovenia, February 18, 2019. Slovenian Volleyball legend Adolf Urnaut received this past weekend the Bloudek Award, the highest national sports award in Slovenia in recognition of his lifetime achievements in sport. Peter Končnik received the Bloudek Plaque for lifetime dedication to sports.

Adolf Urnaut, better known as Adi, has been involved in sport and more specifically in Volleyball in different roles for more than 60 years: as a player, coach, physical education teacher, expert and official. He significantly contributed to the development of Volleyball in the former Yugoslavia and in Slovenia as well.

He started his volleyball career with Fužinar Ravne, Slovenia back in 1956. He played more than 300 matches for the national team of Yugoslavia and he was the captain of that team as well, taking part in three editions of the World Championship and three European Championships. Together with Team Yugoslavia, he won bronze at the 1965 Universiade in Budapest and two gold medals at the Mediterranean Games (in 1963 and 1967 in Naples and Tunis, respectively).

He was a member of several Yugoslavian clubs participating in international competitions, winning a silver medal in the Champions Cup (1964) with Mladost ZAGREB. After finishing his career as a player, he coached a number of men and women’s volleyball clubs in Slovenia, Croatia and Italy.

Adi Urnaut on stage upon receiving the highest distinction in sports for Slovenian citizens.

Beside his involvement in indoor Volleyball, he has worked in Beach and Sitting Volleyball (leading club teams as well as the men’s and women’s national teams) as well. He guided his son Tine Urnaut, nowadays captain of Slovenia’s national team, and his then partner Nejc Zemljak to gold at the 2005 Youth World Championship and bronze in the U18 European Championship.

As coach of the Slovenian Sitting Volleyball women’s national team, Adi won silver at the World Championships in 2002 and bronze medals in 2000 and 2006. He led his team to the European Championship title in 1999 and won 10 other silver and bronze medals at the European Championships, Intercontinental Cup and European Cup. He participated in three Paralympic Games.

Urnaut is still actively involved in sport as coach for the Sitting Volleyball club Samorastnik and an expert leader at the International Volleyball Camp Tine Urnaut specifically designed for young players. Adi inspired and helped all of his three sons - Andrej, Matjaž and Tine - to become elite level Volleyball players.