Alanya, Turkey, June 22, 2012. As they have embarked on their quest to claim a ticket for the London Olympics, the favorites edged their opponents on the opening day of the CEV Beach Volleyball Continental Cup Final – Men in Alanya, Turkey. The Netherlands, Poland, Austria and Norway all advanced to the semifinal phase of the competition following victories over Sweden, Russia, Turkey and Spain respectively in their best-of-five duels.
In the first morning session on the center court at Galip Dere Beach in Alanya, Dutch Emiel Boersma/Daan Spijkers opened with a 21-15, 21-18 triumph against Petter and Viktor Jonsson from Sweden. Alexander Brouwer/Robert Meeuwsen (NED) then claimed a 24-22, 21-15 win over Hannes Brinkborg/Stefan Gunnarsson, before Boersma/Spijkers ended the first quarterfinal at the 2012 Continental Cup Final – Men in favor of the Netherlands.
On court two, Polish Michal Kadziola/Jakub Szalankiewicz dominated in their two outings of the day. They first beat Russia’s Sergei Prokopiev/Yury Bogatov 21-17, 21-15 and then were too good for Konstantin Semenov/Yaroslav Koshkarev with a two-set win 21-19, 21-18. Poland’s second team Bartosz Losiak/Piotr Kantor contributed greatly with a hard-fought 2-1 (16-21, 21-17, 15-11) win over Russian Semenov/Koshkarev to offer Poland their ticket for the semifinals.
In the quarterfinal clash of Norway and Spain, Norvegian Tarjei Skarlund/Martin Spinnangr began the day outdueling Spain’s Raul Mesa-Inocencio Lario by scores of 21-16, 14-21, 15-13 and still had enough in the tank to prevail again 2-1 (21-16, 12-21, 15-10) over the second Iberian team Francisco Marcos/Christian García in their afternoon clash. Iver Andreas Horrem/Geir Eithun didn’t help their countrymen in the morning session with a 0-2 loss (16-21, 20-22) against Marcos/García. However, they kept cool in their second match of the day by beating Mesa/Lario 2-1 (21-17, 12-21, 15-13) in extremis to give Norway their ticket for Saturday’s semifinals.
Finally, number two seeded Austria overpowered host Turkey 3-1 to take the fourth spot in tomorrow’s semifinals. In the opening match of this eagerly awaited quarterfinal contest, Clemens Doppler/Alexander Horst proved too strong for the local heroes Murat Giginoglu/Hakan Gögtepe 21-16, 21-19, while the second Turkish team Selcuk Sekerci/Volkan Gögtepe fought heroically to level the duel 1-1 with a 2-1 (21-14, 18-21, 15-10) victory over Alexander Huber/Robin Seidl. Doppler/Horst set the pace again for Austria in the third duel, overpowering Sekerci/Gögtepe in straight sets (21-12, 21-13). Huber-Seidl eventually closed it out with a convincing 2-0 (21-19, 21-11) over Giginoglu/Gögtepe.
With the Olympic Games 2012 approaching very quickly, the CEV Beach Volleyball Continental Cup Final is the last and deciding stage of the competition whereby the best European teams stemming from the previous rounds are trying to fulfill their Olympic dream.
Since Friday players from eight countries are fighting for only one ticket for the London Olympics. However, all is not lost for the nations finishing second and third as they move on to the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Cup Olympic Qualification tournament set to take place in Moscow, Russia from June 28 to July 1. The champions and vice-champions from this competition will claim the final berths to the Games, completing the line-up.
The competition will resume on Saturday with the 1/2 finals, where the Netherlands takes on Poland and Austria go for a thrilling duel versus Norway.
Alanya is a beach resort and a component district of Antalya Province in the Mediterranean Region of Turkey, 166 kilometers east from the city of Antalya. On the southern coast of Turkey, the city has approximately 100.000 inhabitants.
Click here for more information, including detailed results and the semifinal match schedule.
Click here for the live gallery that will be provided throughout this weekend by eventoLive.
The Netherlands vs Sweden 3-0
Boersma E.-Spijkers vs Jonsson-Jonsson 2-0 (21-15, 21-18)
Brouwer-Meeuwsen vs Brinkborg-Gunnarsson 2-0 (24-22, 21-15)
Boersma E.-Spijkers vs Brinkborg-Gunnarsson 2-1 (17-21, 21-15, 15-13)
Poland vs Russia 3-0
Kadziola-Szalankiewicz vs Prokopiev-Bogatov 2-0 (21-17, 21-15)
Losiak-Kantor vs Semenov-Koshkarev 2-1 (16-21, 21-17, 15-11)
Kadziola-Szalankiewicz vs Semenov-Koshkarev 2-0 (21-19, 21-18)
Norway vs Spain 3-1
Skarlund-Spinnangr vs Mesa-Lario 2-1 (21-16, 14-21, 15-13)
Horrem-Eithun vs Marcos-García 0-2 (16-21, 20-22)
Skarlund-Spinnangr vs Marcos-García 2-1 (21-16, 12-21, 15-10)
Horrem-Eithun vs Mesa-Lario 2-1 (21-17, 12-21, 15-13)
Austria vs Turkey 3-1
Doppler-Horst vs Giginoglu-Gögtepe H. 2-0 (21-16, 21-19)
Huber-Seidl vs Sekerci-Gögtepe V. 1-2 (14-21, 21-18, 10-15)
Doppler-Horst vs Sekerci-Gögtepe V. 2-0 (21-12, 21-13)
Huber-Seidl vs Giginoglu-Gögtepe H. 2-0 (21-19, 21-11)