Myslowice was the venue for the inaugural FIVB Beach
Volleyball U23 World Championships and it was European
teams who finished top of the podium in both the men’s and
looks back on all the
action from southern Poland.
The FIVB Beach Volleyball U23 World Championships were set up as
one last bridge between age-group and World Tour beach volleyball
and it came as little surprise that the two gold medal-winning teams
were duos who had already appeared on the FIVB Beach Volleyball
Men’s gold went to local favourites Piotr Kantor and Bartosz Losiak,
who added U23 World Championship gold to their FIVB Beach
Volleyball U21 World Championship crown in 2012 and the FIVB
Beach Volleyball U19 World Championship gold medal that they won
in 2010 and used their experience from playing on the World Tour
to full effect.
Germany’s Victoria Bieneck and Isabell Schneider meanwhile powered
their way to gold in an equally competitive female field to once again
underline Germany’s growing strength.
Thirty-two teams per gender took part in the tournament and
featured teams from developing countries, notably St. Lucia, Kenya
and Rwanda. With Myslowice having experience of organising a
wide variety of Open and age-group tournaments, the FIVB Beach
Volleyball U23 World Championships were in safe hands for their
Kantor and Losiak were the dominant team throughout the
tournament and were firm favourites for the local crowd, who filled
centre court whenever they stepped onto the sand.
The Poles were pushed hard by Austrian duo Lorenz Petutschnig
and Tobias Winter in the semifinal, but recovered from the three-set
match to win in straight sets against Brazil’s Vitor Felipe and Marcio
Guadie Ley, 2-0 (21-16, 21-17).
“Of course we are very happy,” Kantor said. “We want to thank our
supporters because today we had a full house. We thought we would
play the Russian and Austrian teams at some point in the tournament
and luckily we beat them to reach the final.
In the final we played a very
hard opponent in Brazil, but
we managed to win and I am
very proud of that.
For Brazil’s Vitor Felipe the silver completed a disappointing hat-trick
that included silver medals from the FIVB Beach Volleyball U21 World
Championships in 2009 and 2010. However, he was another player
Familiar teams add U23 crowns to medal
FIVB BEACH VOLLEYBALL
U23 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP