European Championships

Germany at the top of the Europe again

Germany clinched 10th title in Men's Teams Event at the GAZPROM European Championships in Cluj. In breathtaking final they overcame Russia. Despite losing the final, Russia rewrites the history books twice. They played with the youngest ever team in the final of the European Championships – average age of three players is 19,7; by doing so they achieved best result ever for Russia. Until now, Russia has been at the medal rostrum only once and then they were third.

Denmark and Sweden won bronze.

Drama was the main genre on the ultimate day of the fights at the GAZPROM European Team Championships in Cluj. In the final, Maksim GREBNEV recovered from the 0:2 in reverse to overcame Benedikt DUDA in the opening match (3:11, 4:11, 11:7, 11:8, 12:10).

Patrick FRANZISKA needed full five games to overcame Lev KATSMAN (11:7, 4:11, 13:11, 6:11, 6:11). Lev had a lead 2:1, but Patrick managed to settle into his rhythm and to won the match. In third match Vladimir SIDORENKO had a good start, but failed to produce the win against Dang QIU (11:9, 6:11, 10:12, 8:11).

“It was a very big fight, not only my match, but every match. It was so close. My duel could also went easily to the 5th set but I managed to win it in only four. I’m very happy that we win this somehow, that we have such a strong team. FRANZISKA could lose 2 points today against such strong players. I mean, they are young, they have a great future. I’m just really happy that we won,” said Dang

In the match against GREBNEV, FRANZISKA played like he is on fire but from 0:3 in the third game magic went to the other side. Grebnev made 7 points in the row in the big style, before he pushed the match into the fourth game. In fourth FRANZISKA won only three points and once again decisive game was on the menu. Drama continued in the decisive game which finished by the narrow margin (11:13, 5:11, 11:9, 11:3, 15:13).

“The Russian team played an amazing tournament. Their players are so young and they have so much potential. We knew that we will have to play at our best today. Congratulations to Russia! Definitely the bright future lays ahead of the . Now we are very happy that we won. We were a little bit of favorites. I thing it was a great final with a better hand for us. Against GREBNEV I was leading 2:0 and 3- 0 in points but I started to played too safe and comfortable. At a certain moment of the game he came out like a tornado. He became extremely aggressive and I was taken by surprise. In the end I think that no-one should lose this match. May be there was a little bit more experience by my side but it could go definitely the other way. He played at his best. Absolutely fantastic player,” said FRANZISKA

This was Germany's 15th final. Only Sweden (19) has more. In addition. This is the first time Germany is in the final without Timo BOLL or Dimitrij OVTCHAROV since 1990. The last time Germany was not in the final was in 2005.

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