Lucerne, Switzerland, May 13, 2016 – Oleg Stoyanovskiy and Artem Yarzutkin were one of eight teams to top their pool on Friday at the FIVB Beach Volleyball U21 World Championships. The 19-year old Russian youngsters are regulars on the World Tour and won silver at the Kish Island Open this year, but gladly make time to compete at the age-group event in Lucerne.
“Of course we are still motivated to play here”, 19-year old Stoyanovskiy said. “Because we want to win the world championships. We have a European title and an olympic one. Only a world championship is missing."
In 2013 the Russian pair won the U18 European Championships and in 2014 the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing. In the past few years they have also participated in more than a dozen World Tour events and at the 2015 World Championships in the Netherlands, where they finished 17th. But a youth world title is still missing after finishing 9th and 5th at the 2013 and 2015 U19’s.
In Lucerne they started their hunt for a gold medal with pool wins over England, China and Argentina. Their first match on Friday against China (21-18, 22-24, 15-12) did not go that smooth.
Stoyanovskiy: “They played very, very good. It was not our best game. We lost one set, but we were able to beat them. We are very satisfied that we won three games now and first place in the pool. And that we have a little bit more rest tomorrow.”
The competition is stiff, but the 2.05 metres blocker is confident. “There are so many strong teams here, like Brazil and Germany. But we are also strong and we are going to win this tournament. But it will be very hard.”
The second Russian team, qualifiers Maxim Sivolap and Taras Myskiv, also topped their pool, as did Venezuela’s Peter & Tigrito, Norway’s Mol & Berntsen, Brazil’s George & Arthur, Poland’s Lysikowski & Paszkowski, Mexico’s Gaxiola & Rubio and home team Florian Breer & Yves Haussener.
The Swiss team, who are the reigning U17 world champions, booked two wins in pool A, just like Dutch team Bouter & Van Steenis and Finland’s Siren & Maattanen, but had the best ratio in the end. “After that first difficult match we lost against the Netherlands on Thursday, we are very lucky that we won the pool today”, Haussener said.
Out of the eight Swiss men’s and women’s teams that entered the tournament, Breer and Haussener are the only ones left in the competition. Breer: “That’s sad. But now we have to go match to match and fight for our country.”
The men’s pool winners all have a day off on Saturday as they get a bye in the first round. Breer and Haussener already know how they are going to spend their free time. “Sleep long, a lot of rest”, Haussener said. “Maybe play some balls but not too much, I think. And watch our next opponents for sure.” Quick linksFIVB Beach Volleyball U21 World Championships Lucerne 2016Men - Qualification resultsWomen - Qualification resultsMen - Main draw resultsWomen - Main draw results