WCL: 9 teams already in Top 12, who can organise Final Four?

Five legs of group stages in CEV Deniz Bank Champinos League has passed. 9 teams have already advanced, others like Unedo Busto Arsizio, Tauron Dąbrowa Górnicza or Iqtisadchi Baku are out of further games. It’s also high time for CEV to think about host of Final Four – will it be Baku or Istanbul again? I hope not.



Results from Wednesday and Thursday:

Pool A:

Dresdner SC – Omichka Omsk 1-3 (25-21 15-25 20-25 18-25)

Dresden: Apitz (2), Perry (15), Langgemach (4), Izquierdo-Mocasqui (13), Schwabe (7), Karg (10), Schoot (L) and Marcelle (1), Mikhailenko (5), Goos, Stock (L)
Omichka: Babeshina (6), Mammdova (8), Shlyakhovaya (14), Carillo De La Paz (12), Kutyukova (20), Yurieva (13), Kuzyakina (L) and Orlova, Belkova (2)

Having home advanatage, Dresdner SC surprisingly won first set. Later game turned into expected run, Omichka controlled situation on court in next sets. Leading player was outside hitter from Omsk Yulia Kutyukova, with 20 points in her account. By host team the best scorer was American wing spiker Rebecca Perry, who played also in Puerto Rico and Korea.

Team Stats:

ActionsSpike pointsSpike %BlockServeRec ExcRec PosErrorsDresden4643%10113%33%25Omichka5349%13929%47%23

Team Leaders:

ActionsPointsSpike ptsSpike %BlockAceErrorsRebecca Perry151441%106Yulia Kutyukova201761%213


Pool C:

Gent Dames – Atom Trefl Sopot 0-3 (23-25 14-25 21-25)

Gent: Divoux (2), De Valkener (7), Catry (7), Goliat (8), Verstrepen (11), Verhulst (1), Lemey (L) and Van Cleemputte, De Schrijver
Atom: Bełcik (3), Leys (14), Efimienko (12), Podolec (14), Molnar (10), Shelukhina (5), Zenik (L) and Kaczorowska

Belgian outsider had theoretically no chances against polish team, but they started match succesfully, leading towards bigger part of opening set. Atom tore it off eventually. Next sets were easier for team from Sopot, but beginning of last part was also nervous. Best player from Gent was outside hitter Carolien Verstrepen, while by Atom leading players were always reliable outside hitter Charlotte Leys and MVP of last match in OrlenLiga vs. Chemik Police – Anna Podolec.

Team Stats:

ActionsSpike pointsSpike %BlockServeRec ExcRec PosErrorsGent2529%6525%48%17Atom4142%11618%47%25

Team Leaders:

ActionsPointsSpike ptsSpike %BlockAceErrorsKarolien Verstrepen111037%013Charlotte Leys141048%315


Dinamo Romprest Bucharest – Vakifbank Istanbul 0-3 (23-25 21-25 17-25)

Dinamo: Nenova (3), Corjeutanu (2), Marcovici (8), Baciu (10), Karakasheva (12), Zarkova (6), Davis (L) and Carbuneanu (2)
Vakifbank: Aydemir Akyol (7), Sonsirma (10), Toksoy Guidetti (9), Uslupehlivan (17), Costagrande (17), Fuerst (5), Karadayi (L) and Brakocevic, Akin, Onal Pasaoglu (1), Nikolic (2), Akman (1)

Dinamo’s main problem was lack of third good-scoring wing spiker. Surpringly disappointing performance had Mirela Corjeutanu, who shone in last game against Gent and today she was changed in first set. Unfortuanately, back-up Diana Carbuneanu didn’t good job neither. In Vakifbank rest had opposite Jovana Brakocevic, who was replaced by Polen Uslupehlivan – best scorer of game together with Carolina Costagrande. Also significant part of game was serve – Vakifbank had 14 aces throughout 3 sets!

Team Stats:

ActionsSpike pointsSpike %BlockServeRec ExcRec PosErrorsDinamo3036%8539%56%21Vakifbank4848%71452%65%23

Team Leaders:

ActionsPointsSpike ptsSpike %BlockAceErrorsMariya Karakasheva12931%124Polen Uslupehlivan171452%039


Pool D:

Eczacibasi VitrA Istanbul – Schweriner SC 3-0 (25-15 25-17 25-15)

Eczacibasi: Hanke (7), Gumus Kirici (5), Cansu (3), Demir (11), Usic Jogunica (7), Poljak (14), Kuzubasioglu (L) and Y.M.Wang (1), Kayacan (L), Ercan (1)
Schwerin: Imoudu (2), Vilponen (7), Piest (3), Aulenbrock, Moma Bassoko (8), Pihlajamaeki (3), Voelker (L) and Schueschner (3), Joachim (2), Jenssen, Stein

Schweriner SC played in Turkey with deep substitutions, few starters like Jana Franziska Poll or Lousi Souza Ziegler weren’t in match roster. Still out of game is main strength from German team, Saskia Hippe who is after surgery and will miss long period of current season. Eczacibasi is doing amazingly, playing with Cannes, Schwerin and Prostejov got full set of points, not losing even single set! They’re the best team in group stage. Again brilliant was experienced croatian middle blocker, Maja Poljak. Kind of misunderstanding is for me weird policy by Eczacibasi. They signed with chinese strong wing spiker Yimei Wang, but they use it only on short substitutions, main problem here is communication problem. I wonder why club didn’t sign with translator for Yimei, she may have wasted season, like Saori Kimura had the previous one.

Team Stats:

ActionsSpike pointsSpike %BlockServeRec ExcRec PosErrorsEczacibasi3344%61029%60%22Schwerin1928%548%39%30

Team Leaders:

ActionsPointsSpike ptsSpike %BlockAceErrorsMaja Poljak14556%452Laetitia Moma Bassoko8829%007


Racing Cannes – Agel Prostejov 3-0 (25-23 25-16 25-20)

Cannes: Antonijevic (2), Bokan (3), Rasic (15), Centoni (17), Grothues (14), Aelbrecht (6), Arcangeli (L), Ortschitt (L) and Van Der Vyver (1), Yaneva (1), Ssuchke-Voigt (1), Partenio (1)
Agel: Vincourova (1), Malesevic (1), Borovinsek (7), Carter (11), Kossanyiova (16), Steenbergen (9), Jasova (L) and Markevich, Pereira Soares (1), Ruzickova

It was probably the key match for advance. Now Cannes is really close to achieve Top 12, because Agel has 3 points behind to French team and will play in next round versus Eczacibasi. Prostejov’s weakness was difficulties in spiking. Tijana Malesevic underperformed, getting only 1 point throughout game. Weak numbers had also american opposite, Katie Carter. In french team leaders were Nadia Centoni, Milena Rasic and Maret Grothues.

Team Stats:

ActionsSpike pointsSpike %BlockServeRec ExcRec PosErrorsCannes4439%10732%54%19Agel3032%10622%37%18

Team Leaders:

ActionsPointsSpike ptsSpike %BlockAceErrorsNadia Centoni171743%005Andrea Kossanyiova161250%223


Pool E:

Prosecco Doc-Imoco Conegliano – Unedo Yamammay Busto Arsizio 3-0 (25-20 25-15 26-24)

Imoco: Lloyd (3), Barcellini (8), Barazza (9), Nikolova (10), Fiorin (16), Kauffeldt (11), De Gennaro (L) and Bechis, Dona
Unedo: Wołosz (1), Buijs (12), Garzaro (1), Ortolani (7), Marcon (10), Arrighetti (8), Leonardi (L) and Spirito, Bianchini (2), Petrucci, Michel (6)

In case of these two teams we can talk about switching roles. Prosecco Imoco was rookie and outsider, but they are black horse of this competition, having promising players like Nikolova, Lloyd or De Gennaro. Unedo with lower budget and unfortunate injury by Lonneke Sloetjes still can’t find their proper rhythm and they’re in my opinion huge disappointment. Only Anne Buijs completes her tasks succesfully, from time to time good matches plays also Joanna Wołosz, who is still learning and it’s her first experience in club abroad. I don’t want to blame Serena Ortolani – italian opposite in this year gave birth and she’s still not in shape in which she was before pregnancy.

Team Stats:

ActionsSpike pointsSpike %BlockServeRec ExcRec PosErrorsImoco4542%9337%63%16Unedo3838%7231%65%25

Team Leaders:

ActionsPointsSpike ptsSpike %BlockAceErrorsValentina Fiorin161343%212Anne Buijs121034%204


Pool F:

Tauron MKS Dąbrowa Górnicza – Dinamo Kazan 0-3 (22-25 21-25 20-25)

Tauron: Kirdar Cemberci (3), Sassa (6), Adams (6), Zaroślińska (11), Skowrońska (4), Dziękiewicz (6), Strasz (L), Urban (1), Kaczmar, Staniucha-Szczurek (2)
Dinamo: Rossamakhina (3), Malkova (7), Del Core (10), Gamova (18), Moroz (5), Larson-Burbach (9), Ulanova (L) and Popova, Melnikova, Startseva

Dinamo played better in all elements even with Maria Borodakova and Evgeniya Startseva on bench. Decisive player for Dinamo was again russian opposite, Ekaterina Gamova. By Tauron’s side only Katarzyna Zaroślińska played decently, outside hitters from Tauron again showed low level of play. Where we should find reasons for not satisfactory game by Tauron? I think about transfer policy, Tauron should hire tall outside hitter with strong spike as soon as possible, who can support Zaroślińska. Katarzyna is many times overused and doesn’t have real back-up, because Natalia Brussa is injured. Another cause of problems can be tournee in the USA.

Team Stats:

ActionsSpike pointsSpike %BlockServeRec ExcRec PosErrorsTauron3331%4219%32%25Dinamo3936%9438%52%24

Team Leaders:

ActionsPointsSpike ptsSpike %BlockAceErrorsKatarzyna Zaroślińska111137%006Ekaterina Gamova181743%105


Volero Zurich – Stiinta Bacau 3-1 (25-16 25-23 26-28 25-23)

Volero: Thompson (7), Carcaces Opon (19), Golubovic (10), Rykhliuk (23), Klaric (9), Nikovic (12), Popovic (L) and Granvorka, Nyukhalova, Unternaehrer, Guerra Souza (1)
Stiinta: Staelens (2), Rogojinaru (6), Sosa (14), Herlea (1), Potrokar (15), Sobo (21), Vujovic (L) and Bacsis (4), Miclea Grigoruta, Petrovic (1), Baltatu (1)

Pair Rykhliuk-Carcaces was main strength and key for Volero’ssuccess and advance to Top 12. Stiinta is still missing reliable opposite. Neither Herlea, nor Bacsis scored often for Stiinta. Earlier I thought about Marina Cvetanovic as solution for Romanian team, but she was mostly bench player. One week ago I was surprised when she wasn’t in match roster. Eventually appeared a piece of news that Cvetanovic joined Muszynianka Muszyna.

Team Stats:

ActionsSpike pointsSpike %BlockServeRec ExcRec PosErrorsVolero5435%81125%46%29Stiinta6339%15628%35%42

Team Leaders:

ActionsPointsSpike ptsSpike %BlockAceErrorsOlessya Rykhliuk231936%405Alexandra Sobo211257%723


Who has already advanced to Top 12?

Azerbaijan: Rabita Baku
Italy: Rebecci Nordmecchanica Piacenza,
Russia: Omichka Omsk, Dinamo Moscow, Dinamo Kazan
Switzerland: Volero Zurich
Turkey: Vakifbank Istanbul, Eczacibasi Vitra Istanbul, Galatasaray Daikin Istanbul

Who fights for rest places?

Pool C: Atom Trefl Sopot, Dinamo Romprest Bucharest (Atom with 3 pts advantage)
Pool D: Racing Cannes, Agel Prostejov (Cannes with 3 pts advantage)
Pool E: Pro Secco Doc-Imoco Conegliano, Azeryol Baku (Imoco with 3 pts advantage)

The last one curious thing is host of F4 tournament. I wonder who will choose CEV and if this team advanced to Top 12 or will it be someone from not qualified. Last finals were in Baku and Istanbul. Both cities have 3 good clubs each, having a lot of money and so many stars. I hope that CEV members don’t think only about money and they’ll choose another city and hall for host of these games.

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