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 Press Release
The Netherlands and Norway to clash for Olympic spot

Geir Eithun and the Norvergian team proved too strong for Austria in Saturday’s semifinal
Alanya, Turkey, June 23, 2012. The Netherlands and Norway will fight for the men’s beach volleyball ticket to the London 2012 Olympics when the two nations meet in the final game of the CEV Men's Beach Volleyball Continental Cup on Sunday at Galip Dere Beach in Alanya, Turkey.

The winners of the tournament will be given a ticket to the Games while the second, third and fourth placed teams will stay in competition for the last two Olympic berths on offer at the FIVB World Cup Qualification Tournament in Moscow, Russia from June 27 to July 1. 

In Saturday’s semifinals, the Netherlands proved too strong for Poland (3-0), while Norway overpowered Austria in a thrilling series with the same score. 

Poland’s opening match in today’s first semifinal at Galip Dere Beach was promising but the Netherlands recouped from a setback with Emiel Boersma and Daan Spijkers prevailing 2-1 (18-21, 21-16, 15-10) over Poland’s Bartosz Losiak and Piotr Kantor. Alexander Brouwer and Robert Meeuwsen followed their Dutch compatriots with a well-deserved 2-0 (21-17, 21-18) triumph over Michal Kadziola and Jakub Szalankiewicz to make it 2-0 for the Netherlands after the morning session. After the midday break, the Dutch express needed a few moments to gather speed, but Boersma/Spijkers fought back bravely with a 2-1 (13-21, 21-19, 15-10) win over Poland’s Kadziola/Szalankiewicz to confirm their final spot . 

“We are very happy to have a 50-50 chance to go to London,” Daan Spijkers said after the match. “We knew it would be difficult against Poland, but both Dutch teams were much more focused today. Tomorrow we’ll need again a top performance to make our dreams come true.” 

In today’s second semifinal clash between Austria and Norway, in the first duel Tarjei Skarlund/Martin Spinnangr opposing Alexander Huber/Robin Seidl delighted the fans with outstanding play. After 72 minutes of tough combat, Norway kept the upper hand, overpowering their Austrian adversaries Huber/Seidl 2-1 (23-25, 25-23, 15-13). Things didn’t change in the second match as Iver Horrem/Geir Eithun and Clemens Doppler/Alexander Horst had another hard-fought battle. The Austrians won the first set, but Horrem/Eithum came back strongly by beating their opponents 2-1 (16-21, 21-19, 15-8). Skarlund/Spinnangr put the result beyond doubt in the third encounter, dashing the Austrian hopes for a direct qualification to London. The Norwegians defeated Doppler/Horst in straight sets (21-19, 21-17) to claim Norway’s ticket for Sunday’s final against the Netherlands. 

“Both Norwegian teams worked greatly together, that’s why we set the pace in today’s semifinal,” Tarjei Skarlund expalined. “It will be a tough battle versus the Netherlands. However, we are confident for tomorrow’s final duel.” 

With the Olympic Games 2012 approaching very quickly, the CEV Beach Volleyball Continental Cup Final is the last and deciding stage of the competition with the best European teams stemming from the previous rounds trying to fulfill their Olympic dream. 

Since Friday players from eight countries have been fighting for only one ticket for the London Olympics. The competition in Alanya will come to an end on Sunday, when the Netherlands face Norway in the gold medal clash. 

Results

The Netherlands vs Poland 3-0 
Boersma E.-Spijkers vs Losiak-Kantor 2-1 (18-21, 21-16, 15-10) 
Brouwer-Meeuwsen vs Kadziola-Szalankiewicz 2-0 (21-17, 21-18) 
Boersma E.-Spijkers vs Kadziola-Szalankiewicz 2-1 (13-21, 21-19, 15-10) 

Norway vs Austria 3-0 
Skarlund-Spinnangr vs Huber-Seidl 2-1 (23-25, 25-23, 15-13) 
Horrem-Eithun vs Doppler-Horst 2-1 (16-21, 21-19, 15-8) 
Skarlund-Spinnangr vs Doppler-Horst 2-0 (21-19, 21-17)


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