Kamnik, Slovenia. Calcit Volley KAMNIK and OK Vardar SKOPJE are due to contest back-to-back matches on Tuesday and Wednesday for the 16th Finals of the CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup 2021. The overall winners of this double header will face Allianz Powervolley MILANO of Italy in the 8th Finals.
“We play at home and we are counting on a victory. However, fact is that Macedonian Volleyball teams have always been a hard nut to crack. They come from a Balkan volleyball style, so I know they are as cunning as a fox. We have some of their videos and we saw that this is not a physically tall team. There should be no surprises, especially if we are able to play with our full roster,” Gregor Jeroncic, head coach of the home team, admits that he is not too familiar with the visiting team. “It will be important to perform well on two or three things that are most important in Volleyball. If we win this round, it will be a lot different later when we will face MILANO. Tactics will also be very important, but we are not even thinking about the Italians yet,” said Jeroncic about the upcoming Challenge Cup matches.
Calcit Volley KAMNIK, a regular feature in international competitions for almost two decades, have a wealth of experience from the European Cups. Their biggest success remains reaching the quarterfinals in the Top Teams Cup in 2004, while in the Challenge Cup they made it to the quarterfinals last year and in 2014 as well. On both occasions, Italian teams from Monza and Latina were too strong for them, while Hypo Tirol INNSBRUCK stopped their journey in the Top Teams Cup.
On the other hand, this will be OK Vardar’s only third appearance in the European Cups. They performed on the European stage for the first time 43 years ago and for the second time last season when they lost in the opening round to VK ?EZ KARLOVARSKO of the Czech Republic. In this year’s domestic championship, they have recorded five victories and one defeat in six rounds. Calcit Volley are currently sitting in second place in the Slovenian national league, having recorded six victories from seven rounds they have contested this far.
CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup 2021 – Men
17/11/2020, 20:00 OK Vardar SKOPJE (MKD) – Calcit Volley KAMNIK (SLO)
18/11/2020, 20:00 Calcit Volley KAMNIK (SLO) – OK Vardar SKOPJE (MKD)