It is celebration time this week as the MEVZA men’s Middle European League arrives to Székesfehérvár for the first time in the competition history. MÁV Elore Foxconn will make its debut in the competition on home soil in the VOK Sportcsarnok, going head-to-head with two Slovakian heavyweights and a Croatian powerhouse.
The Hungarian hosts have been through a busy month. While in the middle of October the players were preparing for the first international competition in the club’s almost 115-year history, this week they will have to face three tough opponents in the Middle European League in the matter of three days.
The four participating clubs of the tournament have all made a name for themselves in the world of volleyball. Representing Hungary as the only male team in the competition, MÁV Elore Foxconn was the silver-medalist of the Extraliga last year. They have started the 2023/24 season with an outstanding record of 8 wins out of 8 games (2 in the CEV Challenge Cup) and no sets lost. They lead the domestic league table, got in the round of 32 of the CEV Challenge Cup and are also in the quarterfinals of the Hungarian Cup.
Two-time Slovakian champions and Slovakian Cup winners Rieker UJS Komárno are also a team to watch. They had a dismal end to last season due to the injury of their setter, but they are back to their very best as serious contenders for the crown of the CEV Challenge Cup and the Slovakian Extraliga. The squad is stacked with homegrown talent. Their only foreign player is Canada-born outside spiker Jeff Lam. Last year they were in the top 8 of the MEVZA Middle European League and it is no secret that they aim higher now.
Croatian Cup winners and the runners-up of the Croatian Superleague MOK Mursa Osijek finished 7th in the MEVZA Middle European League in 2023, while they took the 21st place in the CEV Cup. They failed to reach the round of 32 in the latter and started slowly in their domestic league this season, but make no mistake, that will only give them more hunger to prove themselves.
Slovakian bronze medalists TJ Spartak Myjava might be the dark horse of the tournament. They did not start this season well, sitting in the fifth place of the Extraliga, but they certainly have the firepower to cause problems to any team on their day. Much like Komárno, they operate with Slovakian talent. Their only foreign player is 19-year-old outside spiker Arsenii Donets from Ukraine.
MEVZA Middle European League – Tournament 1
Hungary, Székesfehérvár, VOK Sportcsarnok
14.-16. November 2023.
MÁV Elore Foxconn – Rieker UJS Komárno 15:00
MOK Mursa Osijek – TJ Spartak Myjava 18:00
MÁV Elore Foxconn – TJ Spartak Myjava 15:00
MOK Mursa Osijek – Rieker UJS Komárno 18:00
MÁV Elore Foxconn – MOK Mursa Osijek 17:00