Vienna, Austria, September 16, 2020. This past weekend, Halkbank ANKARA (see picture) claimed the 2020 edition of the BVA Cup, the annual competition hosted and run by the Balkan Volleyball Association, with a comprehensive 3-0 victory in the final against KV Luboteni FERIZAJ from Kosovo. This means that the Turkish team secured the right to participate in the CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup 2021 and will face UVC Holding GRAZ of Austria in the opening round of the competition. The roster of Halkbank includes this year Austrian Volleyball star Alexander Berger, which makes this duel particularly interesting from a red-white-red point of view.
The first matchup will be taking place on October 8 at the Raiffeisen Sportpark, with the return following a week later in the Turkish capital. “I am of course very happy to be coming to Graz with my new team. I have great memories of the Raiffeisen Sportpark, where there are always many people attending the matches. Of course, we first have to see how many fans will be able to take a seat in the stands in times of coronavirus. However, I am confident that fans would be able to take all available seats, if they could do so, and not because I am coming, but because Graz is a Volleyball-loving place. Of course, I am also happy to see many familiar faces. We will certainly not underestimate the team of Graz. It will definitely be cool games,” Berger says.
On Wednesday, Berger will be playing his second match in the Turkish national league with Halkbank, a derby with Ziraat Bankasi ANKARA. Both teams started the AXA Sigorta Efeler Ligi with comprehensive victories last week.
Another Turkish team, THY ISTANBUL, won the women’s BVA Cup to play OK KAŠTELA of Croatia in the 16th Finals of the CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup.