Six teams stand out in Champions League prelims with three straight victories
Luxembourg, November 8, 2013 – There are six teams with an immaculate record of three victories after the third round of prelim action in the 2014 CEV DenizBank Volleyball Champions League – Men was completed on Thursday evening. France’s TOURS VB, Russia’s Belogorie BELGOROD, Italy’s Diatec TRENTINO and Lube Banca Marche MACERATA, as well as Halkbank ANKARA and Knack ROESELARE all top the charts of their respective groups waiting for the competition to resume in early December after the break due to the FIVB World Grand Champions Cup coming up later this month in Japan.
The triple block of Lube Banca Marche MACERATA starring (from left to right) Michele Baranowicz, Marko Podrascanin, and Bartosz Kurek stopping an attack by 2013 FIVB Club World Championship silver medallist Pavel Moroz of Lokomotiv NOVOSIBIRSK |
Russia’s champions Belogorie BELGOROD have simply routed their opponents in Pool B with three straight victories over Noliko MAASEIK, Olympiacos PIRAEUS and – more recently – VK OSTRAVA to leave their mark in the prelims of Europe’s elite competition right from the go. This series of great performances confirms what their mentor Gennady Shipulin had stated shortly before the start of the season, as he stressed the CEV Volleyball Champions League was the main goal he had set for the 2013/2014 campaign of his star-studded team.
France’s TOURS VB followed up on last week’s home victory over Italy’s vice-champions Copra Elior PIACENZA with an away win in Slovenia where the players captained by Czech opposite David Konecny played another superb game to edge hosts ACH Volley LJUBLJANA and cement their leadership in Pool A.
Though their roster has undergone many changes this summer, Diatec TRENTINO still looks very competitive and on Wednesday cruised to a third straight victory as well, this time routing Turkey’s Arkas IZMIR in straight sets at the Atatürk sports hall.
The most anticipated game of the week did actually take place in Italy where Lube Banca Marche MACERATA and the winners of the 2013 edition, Lokomotiv NOVOSIBIRSK, crossed their ways in the third round of play for what Volleyball fans have dubbed the “group of death”, Pool E.
With another solid performance, MACERATA could cruise past another Russian giant – they had already stunned Zenit KAZAN in the first round of play – to keep first place in a group where the battle for a spot in the Playoffs 12 is expected to be very close up to the end of the prelims.
Halkbank ANKARA and their many stars – Osmany Juantorena, Matey Kaziyski and Raphael Vieira de Oliveira to name only a few – also cashed their third victory in the competition after travelling to Austria to cruise past Hypo Tirol at the Olympic stadium in Innsbruck and cement their supremacy in Pool F.
Knack ROESELARE is the side that tops the tables in Pool G after their sensational home victory from this past Tuesday over Poland’s Zaksa KEDZIERZYN-KOZLE, the team that had finished last year’s edition in fourth place. Knack head coach Emile Rousseaux was evidently delighted with what his players have accomplished so far: “My players keep surprising me” he said after the home victory over Zaksa. “It is my job to prepare the game as good as possible from a tactical point of view but my players eventually decide about the outcome of the match. They did a great job tonight and I am very proud of them.”
For further information visit www.cev.lu
- Coaches in Trieste expect a close affair
- 2014 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour update after 14 events
- FIVB Women's World Championship - Day 7 - As It Happened
- Vargas has memory to cherish
- Sheilla: In the heart of Italian fans
- Asian Games favourites show determination in men's tournament
- First round concludes with thrilling matches across Italy
- Ma-Xia win beach volleyball gold at Asian Games
- First FIVB World Tour medal bittersweet for Italy's Menegatti/Orsi Toth
- Call brings old Brazilian friends back together on the beach
- Turkey, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Belgium claim last second round tickets
- President Medina visits Dominican compatriots in Italy
- FIVB Women's World Championship - Day 6 - As It Happened
- Brazil holds off Italy to win women’s gold at FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam
- Netherlands stops Brazil for men’s gold medal at FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam
- China’s Ma-Xia to face Thailand’s Udomchavee-Radarong in the final of Asian Games beach volleyball tournament
- Final four spots into Women's World Championship 2nd Round to be settled Sunday
- Korea, Japan, Iran, China men top pools in Asian Games
- Varenhorst calls in the Experience to FIVB Sao Paulo Grand Slam
- Beach growing in the land of Volleyball
- Korea, China, Thailand, Japan advance to Asian Games semis
- Fourth day capped by exciting action, big crowds
- Brazil, Netherlands to tangle for men’s gold Sunday at FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam
- China keep a clean sheet; four second round spots still open
- Brazil to meet Italy for women’s gold at FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam
- FIVB Women's World Championship - Day 5 - As It Happened
- Last-minute invite leads Popp to fifth place at FIVB Sao Paulo Grand Slam
- Four China teams make Asian Games beach volleyball semis
- Teams scramble for open spots into the second round
- Men’s final four set for Saturday’s semifinals at FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam
- Women’s final four set for Saturday’s semis at FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam
- Slow end doesn't dull Czech Republic's Slukova/Kolocova breakthrough year
- FIVB Women's World Championship - Day 4 - As It Happened
- “Catherine the Great” sets sights on title hat-trick
- Twenty-four men’s duos advance from pool play Thursday at FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam
- Down to seven undefeated teams in Italy
- Canada's Binstock/Schachter earn memorable triple in São Paulo
- Women’s field reduced to 24 teams at FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam
- Seven teams claim second round tickets at FIVB Women’s World Championship
- FIVB Women's World Championship - Day 3 - As it Happened
- Were you at the final?
- Austria's Schwaiger on road to Rio with new teammate
- Day three to feature first meetings with eight undefeated teams
- Ten unbeaten women’s teams Wednesday at FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam
- Five huge surprises in men’s pool play FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam Wednesday
- Eight undefeated teams stand in good position to advance to second round after Day 2
- No second day shocks for tournament favourites
- FIVB Women's World Championship - Day 2 - As It Happened
- Young Brazilians pull of major upset at FIVB Sao Paulo Grand Slam
- Dutch earn second win with victory against Thailand