EFVL Open Podersdorf 2023
Last weekend the European footvolley elite met in Podersdorf (Austria) for this year’s first stage of the European Footvolley League (EFVL) hosted by Footvolley Austria. 17 teams (11 men’s couples and 6 women’s couples) from 10 different countries were competing for 500 ranking points in the EFVL Open.
The event took place at PODO Beach right on the shores of lake Neusiedl, providing a beautiful and spectacular site. Unfortunately, the weather was not playing along with cloudy and cool conditions on Saturday and constant rain on Sunday. As always, the footvolley players and community tried to make the best out of it and celebrated the official kick-off of the 2023 EFVL tournament season. A special shoutout goes to the referees who officiated the games nonstop in the pouring rain.
The men’s competition was dominated by Alain Faccini and Federico Iacopucci from Italy. Last year’s European vice-champions rushed through the group stage beating the 3 Austrian teams and Ukraine with ease.
Group A was more level with France (ending up first in the group), Israel and Norway each winning four games whilst losing one.
In the semi-finals the Italians once more showed their class and beat Israel 18:7 / 18:4. France (Antoine Ottaviani/Pascal Pireddu) was able to get the second ticket to the final thanks to their 3-set-win over Austria 1 (21:23 / 18:11 / 15:10).
In the bronze medal match the Austrian brothers Benedikt and Klemens Hofmann-Wellenhof were again on the losing end after taking the first set (18:10 / 15:18 / 8:15) while Eytam Shamai and Doron Diamant made sure Israel was represented on the podium.
In the big final, Italy continued their immaculate performance and beat the couple from Corsica who put up a great fight in two sets (18:8 / 18:15). Federico Iacopucci was rewarded with the MVP trophy for his outstanding performance.
As always, the women’s tournament was no less exciting than the male competition. Nina Steinbauer and Tina Kulhanek (Austria 2) made it to the final after ending up third in their group, thanks to a victory over Sweden in the quarterfinals (18:10 / 18:7) and a thrilling 3-set-win against Marjorie Finguerman/Illy Levy from Israel.
Austria 1 (Antonia Missethan/Julia Rauch) reached the final without dropping a set and managed to claim the title with an impressive display of their qualities resulting in a 18:11 / 18:11 victory in the Austrian derby. Antonia Missethan was honoured with the MVP award.
In only two weeks the next highlight of the EFVL calendar will go down: Europe’s best women’s teams will meet in Graz at the “EFVL Female Open powered by Thumfort” (May 27th – 28th). Make sure to follow the action on site or on bolaoTV.