Road to #EuroVolley – 16 elite teams per gender compose field for electrifying Final Rounds
2017 CEV Volleyball European Championships - Men & Women
Luxembourg, October 9, 2016. After a qualification process that started as early as this past May, the 16 elite teams per gender that will take part in the Final Round of next year’s CEV Volleyball European Championships are now known! The ‘cream of the crop’ of European Volleyball is set to contribute to a real showdown next year when Poland and Azerbaijan/Georgia will host the Finals of the men’s and women’s competition respectively where the new ‘Kings and Queens’ of European Volleyball will be crowned.
The third and last round of qualifications came to an end on Sunday after home and away matches were contested over the past week. The men’s national teams of Turkey, Spain and Estonia claimed the last tickets at stake to travel to Poland – aka ‘Volleyland’, as this country has become known – that will host the Finals next year. Turkey took even more than the two sets they needed from their re-match with Portugal, eventually cruising to a 3-2 away win as Spain and Estonia also capitalised on their victories from last weekend to edge Greece and Latvia, respectively. The match held in Tallinn can be regarded as a truly historic one – since it attracted the largest crowd (5,681 fans including the country’s Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas) that has ever attended a Volleyball match played on Estonian soil.
The 16 teams competing in the men’s Final Round are: Poland (hosts), the top six – excluding Poland – from the 2015 edition, i.e. France, Slovenia, Italy, Bulgaria, Russia and Serbia, plus the winners of the second-round qualifiers contested in September – Germany, Finland, Belgium, Slovakia, The Netherlands and the Czech Republic – and the three winners from the third-round qualifiers – Turkey, Spain and Estonia.
In the women’s competition, Ukraine and Hungary stormed back from the setbacks they had suffered last week to come out victorious from their fixtures with Spain and Romania, respectively. Earlier this week the Czech Republic had taken the two sets they needed from the remake of their derby with Slovakia.
The 16 teams competing in the women’s Final Round are: Azerbaijan and Georgia (hosts), the top five from the 2015 edition, i.e. Russia, The Netherlands, Serbia, Turkey and Germany, plus the winners of the second-round qualifiers contested in September – Italy, Belgium, Poland, Croatia, Bulgaria and Belarus – and the three winners from the third-round qualifiers – Czech Republic, Ukraine and Hungary.
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