Losiak and Kantor add yet another European title on their impressive tally
2013 CEV U22 Beach Volleyball European Championship
Varna, Bulgaria, August 18, 2013. Bartosz Losiak/Piotr Kantor are the winners of the inaugural 2013 CEV U22 Beach Volleyball European Championship presented by Mtel. The Polish duo claimed the European title and added it to their already impressive record after some exciting battles on the last competition day in Varna. The silver medals went to Norway’s Lars Fredrik Tvinde/Hendrik Nikolai Mol while another Polish team - Maciej Kosiak/Maciej Rudol, earned the bronze.
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A full house of enthusiastic supporters on Yuzhen beach in Varna saw an exciting final battle for the European crown. By what was happening on the sand it was hard to tell who the heavy favorites in this match were. Still Losiak/Kantor succeeded in shutting out Tvinde/Mol by 2:0 (24-22, 22-20) after 44 minutes of play time. Norway rushed into the first set without any worries that they were facing the three-time world champions. They piled up a 4-point lead, but could not hold on to it for long. Poland tied the score at 13-13 and even took the lead soon after. The heavy battle for every point produced a few more switches in the lead and Tvinde/Mol even had a set point. Eventually an ace by Kantor closed the first set at 24-22. The second set was even more dramatic. The gap never got wider than 2 points and the lead went back and forth several times between the two teams. At 20-18 the Norwegians saw themselves with two consecutive set points. However, a great dig, followed by a power hit from Losiak reduced the gap to 1 point and, then, a successful block by Kantor tied the set at 20 each. The Norwegians could not find the right response at this moment and with two unforced errors gave the victory away to the Poles.
”What is the secret of our success? We practice every day all year and we have a coach that works with us on our tactics”, Bartosz Losiak said after receiving the trophy from Jury President and CEV Vice President Banu Can-Schürmann. ”We have several world and European titles, but this one is special, because it is a new age category.”
Losiak / Kantor also had some tough time in their semi final match against German brothers Bennet Poniewaz/David Poniewaz. After losing their only set in this championship, the Poles managed a complete turnaround for the final 2:1 (18-21, 21-16, 15-10). In the other semi final Tvinde/Mol upset Kosiak/Rudol by 2:0 (24-22, 21-13). The bronze medal match was a two-set affair, in which the Poles shut out the Germans by 2:0 (21-14, 21-15).
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