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Austrian party in Novi Sad as Doppler and Horst claim gold after dramatic final

Alexander Horst (left) and former European champion Clemens Doppler celebrate their gold medal at the Novi Sad Masters, second stop of this year's CEV Beach Volleyball European Championship

Novi Sad, Serbia, July 20, 2013 – Austria’s Clemens Doppler and Alexander Horst got the best possible boost they could ask for one week before the start of the home European Championship Final in Klagenfurt as on Saturday they claimed gold at the Novi Sad Masters after edging Germany’s Alexander Walkenhorst and Lars Flüggen 2-1 (20-22, 21-18, 18-16).

Walkenhorst did hence miss out on a second consecutive gold medal in Serbia after last year he had topped the charts of the tournament taking place at Strand beach together with former partner Thomas Kaczmarek. Ukraine’s Valeriy Samoday and Sergiy Popov – last year’s U23 European champions – claimed bronze as they bested another German duo, namely Finn Dittelbach/Eric Koreng 2-1 (21-15, 18-21, 15-8).

The Novi Sad Masters – second stop of this year’s CEV Beach Volleyball European Championship – was hosted once again by the Volleyball Federation of Serbia and their general sponsor Vip mobile right nearby the banks of the Danube River with perfect weather conditions accompanying the actions of a good share of Europe’s Beach Volleyball elite. Doppler and Horst had joined the competition in Novi Sad as the first-seeded duo of the Main Draw and they lived up to their status by walking away with a check worth 5,000 € and with 600 FIVB Ranking Points. Horst was absolutely overwhelmed by this triumph at Strand beach: “We are very happy that we have won this tournament. It was very difficult, as we were fighting hard against one of last year’s champions for each point through three sets. I would like to thank the audience for their great support”.

Serbia’s best pairs in the end were Sinisa Antonic/Marko Galesev and Miljan Kikovic/Marko Nikolic who were both ranked 13th, while Sasa Surla and Djordje Klasnic finished the competition in 17th place.

An idyllic beach sunset provided perfect settings for the official awarding ceremony. The cups were presented by Maris Pekalis, CEV Jury President, accompanied by Nenad Golijanin and Vladimir Grbic, First Vice-President and Vice President of the Volleyball Federation of Serbia respectively. Mr. Predrag Perunicic, State Secretary of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Mr. Predrag Svilar, Member of the City Sports Council, and Milan Novakovic, Director of the City Greenery presented the medals to the top three teams, while the checks were handed over by Thanasis Katsiroumpas, Director/CEO of the Vip mobile company.

Over the past days the city of Novi Sad once again proved to be a perfect host to a CEV Masters tournament. The fans cheered loudly while witnessing spectacular sand duels starring some of the best European players. A great applause was deserved also to Serbian Volleyball legend and 2000 Olympic champion Vladimir Grbic, who spent a few days together with 400 children involved in the special project Vip Beach Volley School that has so far reached a total of 3,000 kids across the country.

The culmination of this year’s CEV Beach Volleyball European Championship will be the final scheduled for July 30-August 4 in Klagenfurt, Austria.


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