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Seven teams book their ticket to U19 Women European Championship in Estonia and Finland
Seven teams – Italy, Serbia, Turkey, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Belgium, and the Czech Republic – qualified this weekend for the Final Round of the 2014 CEV U19 Volleyball European Championship – Women which is scheduled for August 16-24 and thereby joining hosts Estonia and Finland.
The prelims will take place in Tampere and Tartu, with Estonia’s second largest city set to host semis and finals. Another seven teams – Poland, France, Croatia, Russia, Germany, Greece, the Netherlands – as well as the third placed team with the best score across all Pools – Switzerland – will continue their journey with the third and last stage of the qualification process coming up on July 10-13 and where the last three tickets to the Finals will be at stake.
Italy got their revenge from last year’s final of the Youth European Championship by edging Poland in the most anticipated game in Pool A while Serbia needed only two victories – their Pool featured three teams after Ukraine’s withdrawal from the competition – to make sure they would participate in the Final Round for the 15th time since the Championship was established back in the late ‘60s.
Turkey swept all of their matches in Pool C including a straight victory over hosts Croatia while Bulgaria caused one of the major sensations of this qualification round by edging Russia in the last match of Pool D held at Arena Samokov.
Slovenia’s gold medallists from the 2013 European Youth Olympic Festival confirmed their status as rising power with a flawless home campaign in Nova Gorica that reached its peak on Sunday with a 3:0 victory over Germany while Belgium also lived up to the high-end status of the senior “Yellow Tigers” by dominating the tournament held in Greece.
The Czech Republic also cruised to three consecutive victories in Arnhem thereby upsetting the large Dutch audience that had cheered on the young “Oranjes” throughout the whole weekend.
The Final Round of the 2014 CEV U19 Volleyball European Championship – Women will feature 12 teams that will be divided into two Pools of six each. The top two of each Pool will play crossed semi-finals before the next European champions will be crowned on Sunday, August 24 in Tartu. Turkey won the last edition held two years ago in Ankara where the podium was rounded out by Serbia and Italy.
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– but the sailors praise the new boats
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Photo Credit: Dario Belingheri/Bettini Photo
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photo David Cannon/Getty images