Slovenians, Russians in snow volleyball semifinals
The third-seeded Slovenians started the competition from the second round and had no problem shutting out their first opponents, Alessandro Carucci/Angelo Maria Mantegazza from Italy, seeded bottom 19th. Bozenk/Pokersnik took 16 minutes to claim a 2-0 (11-6, 11-5) victory.
In the third round, the gold-medal winners from the stop at Kranjska Gora managed another straight-sets win (11-8, 12-10) against last year’s title-holder from Kronplatz, Benedikt Doranth, and his current teammate Julius Hoefer from Germany.
In the last round before the semifinals, Bozenk/ Pokersnik mastered an even more impressive victory – 2-0 (11-4, 11-9) – against the reigning King of the Snow Michal Matyja and his partner in Kronplatz Karol Szczepanik from Poland, the second-seeded team in the men’s main draw.
Bogatov/ Daianov struggled a little in their first set on Italian snow, but persevered to win 2-0 (18-16, 11-7) over 13th-seeded Austrians David Steinberger/ Simon Varges. In the third round, the Russians achieved a 2-0 (11-6, 11-9) win against fifth-seeded Romanians Bogdan Necula/ Bogdan Constantin Bratosin.
In a tough clash with Piotr Groszek/ Tomasz Cwiertnia, Bogatov/ Daianov upset the top-seeded Poles with a 2-0 (13-11, 11-8) shutout and qualified for Sunday’s semifinals.
“This is our first time in Kronplatz; the conditions are fine and fun,” commented Ruslan Daianov after qualifying for the semis. “The organisers put in a lot of effort to make us feel comfortable. It is a very good tournament and we look forward to the games tomorrow. I hope we have nice and sunny weather again and it will be perfect to finish this season’s European Tour with a first place.”
The other two pairs to play in the semis will emerge after the last two rounds of the losers’ bracket are played on Sunday morning. Still in contention are three duos from Poland and one each from Germany, Switzerland and hosts Italy.
For more detailed information on the European Tour, visit SnowVolleyball.com and CEV’s dedicated pages.