Anticipation mounts for Austrian derby coming up in CEV Challenge Cup

GRAZ,AUSTRIA,01.MAR.20 – VOLLEYBALL – Austrian Volley Cup, FInal Four, final, ladies, ASKOE Linz/Steg vs UVC Graz. Image shows Ursula Ehrhart (Graz). Photo: GEPA pictures/ Mario Buehner

Vienna, Austria. The top two Austrian teams in women’s Volleyball, UVC Holding GRAZ and ASKÖ Steelvolleys LINZ-STEG will be contesting a truly special match on Wednesday night. They are yet to play against each other in domestic competition but they will be locking horns at the Raiffeisen Sportpark Graz in the 16th Finals of the Challenge Cup. The return match will follow in two weeks. 

This is the first duel of the season, as there have been no matches featuring these two teams in the national league so far. “Both teams have only lost once 2-3 in the championship so far and therefore I expect a very close match. It is a shame that these fixtures have to take place without spectators, but we will keep the fans up to date. Maybe we can organise another live streaming,” says UVC Graz sports director Frederick Laure, whose team was able to advance to the Austrian Volley Cup semi-finals on Sunday with a 3-1 success at TSV Sparkasse HARTBERG.  

The Steelvolleys have only been able to complete one of the planned four matches in the past three weekends, and therefore there is much anticipation for the upcoming European Cup duel. “Every day new question marks appear. Nevertheless, we try to hide them and prepare as normally as possible. We look forward to every match we can contest. Games against GRAZ are always extremely good and motivating,” says head coach Roland Schwab. 

All players will undergo COVID-19 tests before the match. In addition, both teams will travel to the actual match venues the very same day of their away fixture, without holding any training sessions on site. “This reduces contacts and also saves the team costs. The CEV is very solution-oriented in this respect and happy about every match played,” explains LINZ-STEG manager Andreas Andretsch.

More about MEVZA teams in European Cups this week here.

CEV Volleyball Challenge Cup 2021 – Women
16th Finals
THY ISTANBUL (TUR) – OK KAŠTELA (CRO) 3-0 (25-16, 25-7, 25-12)
11/11/2020, 17:00 OK KAŠTELA (CRO) – THY ISTANBUL (TUR) 
11/11/2020, 19:00 UVC Holding GRAZ (AUT) – ASKÖ Steelvolleys LINZ-STEG (AUT) 
12/11/2020, 18:00 VK Pirane BRUSNO (SVK) – Sanaya Libby`s LA LAGUNA (ESP)

CEV Volleyball Cup 2021 – Women
16th Finals
11/11/2020, 17:00 Minchanka MINSK (BLR) – Fatum NYÍREGYHÁZA (HUN)
11/11/2020, 17:00 Hapoel KFAR SABA (ISR) – SC POTSDAM (GER)
11/11/2020, 20:00 Mladost ZAGREB (CRO) – PVK Olymp PRAHA CZE)
12/11/2020, 20:00 PVK Olymp PRAHA (CZE) – Mladost ZAGREB (CRO)
11/11/2020, 20:00 KV Drita GJILAN (KOS) – VK Šelmy BRNO (CZE)
12/11/2020, 20:00 VK Šelmy BRNO (CZE) – KV Drita GJILAN (KOS)

CEV Volleyball Cup 2021 – Men
16th Finals
11/11/2020, 18:00 OK Ribola KAŠTELA (CRO) – Galatasaray HDI ISTANBUL (TUR) 
12/11/2020, 17:00 Mladost ZAGREB (CRO) – MONTPELLIER Castelnau UC (FRA) 

CEV – European Volleyball
ÖVV – Volleyball Austria
UVC Holding Graz
Steelvolleys Linz-Steg