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Snow Volleyball party underway in Bakuriani with third stop of 2018 European Tour
2018 CEV Snow Volleyball European Tour
Bakuriani, Georgia, February 24, 2018. Georgia are hosting this weekend an international Snow Volleyball tournament for the first time in history – with Bakuriani, i.e. the country’s most popular winter sports resort, playing host to the competition. Tourists can enjoy there downhill ski runs, cross-country trails, horseback tours, sledding or simply take long walks through the beautiful snowy forests in the surroundings of Bakuriani. This year as an extra pack, they can also attend the Snow Volleyball European Tour stop held right at the very heart of the city.
Teams from Turkey and Russia opened the men’s programme of the first competition day and Vsevolod Bobrikov/Vladislav Mikhalev needed only 19 minutes to claim a 2-0 victory (11-7, 11-8) over Burak Balibey and Guray Arabaci. One of most exciting matches for the spectators in attendance was the Georgian derby featuring Nikoloz Apshinashvili/Erik Abramov and Daviti Chachua/Ivane Gejadze, with Apshinashvili/Abramov emerging victorious before they lost their next matches, first to Russia’s Ivan Golovin/Valeriy Durnin and afterwards to Lithuania’s Artur Vasiljev/Marius Malinauskas. This means that five teams from Russia, two from Poland and one from Lithuania are still in contention for the top honours at the third stop of this year’s European Tour.The women’s home teams from Georgia had not much to celebrate. Ana Tvauri/Nino Sturua lost their first-round match to Lithuania’s Ieva Vasiliauskaite/Gerda Grudzinskaite. Georgia’s Elizabet Palavandishvili/Nana Tsotsonava suffered a setback to another Lithuanian team, i.e. Urte Andriukaityte/Irina Zobnina while Georgian reigning national champions Irina Tchelidze/Mariami Mukasashvili lost to Ksenia Dabizha/Ksenia Khakimzanova of Russia. The two teams from Lithuania continued their triumphal run in the tournament with second-round wins over opponents from Russia and the Czech Republic, the latter ones being the reigning ‘Queens of the Snow’, Anna Dostalova and Michaela Knoblochova.
The first day of competition in Bakuriani benefited from great weather and good music, with the fans having a lot of fun and enjoying many wonderful Volleyball actions. The organisers did also deliver matches played under floodlights, something unprecedented in the still young history of Snow Volleyball.Organisers, players, spectators and volunteers are now looking forward to the second and final day of the European Tour event in Georgia.