Ukrainians, Russians and Czechs earn second round tickets without losing a set
Ukraine overpowered Lithuania in straight sets to claim the top spot in Pool E. After both of these teams had succeeded in winning against Turkish duo Merve Nezir and Irmak Keskin, they had to face each other to settle who gets to skip the first elimination round to go directly to the second.
In their match against Turkey, Ukraine’s Dar'ya Udovenko and Alina Demidova had some difficulties as the second set went deep into overtime to close the match at 2-0 (21-8, 29-27). However, against Lithuania’s Simona Vaiciukynaite and Urte Andriukaityte, the Ukrainian pair maintained a steady rhythm, staying in control of the match and with the support from some enthusiastic fans on the stands to claim a 2-0 (21-16, 21-16) victory in 29 minutes.
The Ukrainian team is just one step away from a ticket to the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games.
“We prepared for this tournament hard and it is really great that we won consecutive matches but we have not yet qualified for the Olympics,” said Ukraine’s Udovenko. “We really want to go to China and we are ready for it.”
“I thank my partner for these two wins,” Demidova added. “We are aware that we still have to win our next game in order to go to Nanjing. We will train hard and prepare well for it.”
The other head-to-head clash for a direct ticket for the second round was between Russia and Germany in Pool F. After the two teams had scored straight-set victories against Italy, the first place in the pool was up for grabs by the winner of this match.
Russia’s Daria Rudykh and Nadezhda Makroguzova clearly showed their supremacy on the court and defeated Germany’s Sarah Schneider and Leonie Welsch 2-0 (21-15, 21-14) in 31 minutes of play.
“The first two games of the competition were easy for us,” said Makroguzova. “We trained really hard and prepared well for this tournament. We are ready for tomorrow’s second round game.”
“We had two straight wins because we were ready,” Rudykh confirmed. “We do not know who we are going to play tomorrow, but we are ready for that game as well. We played the way our coach demands from us and made it through to the second round.”
The only other duo that went through the pool round without losing any sets was the Czech Republic pair of Katerina Valkova and Kristyna Adamcikova.
Also topping their pools with two victories each and qualifying directly for the second qualification round were the teams of France’s Héléna Cazaute and Aline Chamereau, Switzerland’s Esther Rohrer and Dunja Gerson, and Latvia’s Tina Graudina and Anastasija Kravcenoka.