Home heroines of Belarus claim inaugural EEVZA U16 Championship
News from the Zonal Associations
Brest, Belarus, December 21, 2015. The young players from Belarus claimed the top honours at the 2015 EEVZA U16 Women’s Volleyball Championship held in the city of Brest with participation of the national teams of seven EEVZA member Federations (Belarus, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Ukraine).
Belarus claimed the ‘derby’ with their neighbours from Russia cruising to a 3:0 victory (25-16, 25-20, 25-19) in the final match of the tournament. The competition was held in one of the best sports complexes of the country, i.e. Victoria in Brest, and supported by many fans who had come together for the final stage of the tournament, the players under the guidance of coach Natalia Melianiuk imposed their supremacy from start to end of the match. This was the second time Belarus and Russia crossed their ways in the tournament and the home side had claimed also their previous matchup in the group stage by 2:1 (18-25, 25-23, 15-12).
Poland settled for third place and with that secured the bronze medal after edging Latvia in three sets in the ‘small final’ (25-23, 25-19, 25-19).
“In the final game my players showed their best qualities. We did well especially at serving and receiving. Honestly speaking, today we felt less stress and pressure than in the first game we played with Russia. Why? Maybe because with our previous victory in the pool stage we had already crashed their status of pre-favourite and Volleyball powerhouse,” said Belarusian mentor Natalia Melianiuk after the final.
Home heroine Hanna Hryshkevich, who hails from the country’s capital, Minsk, received the award for the best player of the competition.
Some of the young players who represented Belarus in Brest will now enjoy a short rest before they start preparing for the first qualification round of the 2016 CEV U19 Volleyball European Championship which is due to follow on January 8-10. Belarus will be travelling to Tbilisi and play there hosts Georgia and England for a spot in the second round scheduled for late March / early April 2016.
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