EUROPEAN CLUB CHAMPS – Vladivostok stuns TSS

The final of the European Club Championships held in Beauvais France once again saw the Russian club of Vladivostok take the gold medal while Danish Team Skaelskor Slagese missed the […]

The final of the European held in Beauvais France once again saw the Russian club of Vladivostok take the gold medal while Danish Team Skaelskor Slagese missed the last step to come out on top of Europe.

By Raphael Sachetat. Photos: Badmintonphoto (live)

The event was a huge success in the beautifully set up Elispace in Beauvais, a city 60 km north of Paris. Even if the weather had not been as it usually is, all teams from various European countries – except for the Germans – had gathered to try to get the crown won last year by Vladivostok’s team of Primorye. This time, however, Denmark had sent its national champion with the hope stealing the title from the Russians, whose club team is very close to the Russian national team line-up.

The Russians had an easy path towards the final – topping their group, then beating Polish Hubal Byalistok, then Amersfoort of the Netherlands in the semi-final.

TSS, meanwhile, led by their charismatic coach Michael Kjedlsen, saw off French champions Strasbourg – playing without Sashina Vignes, then took on the organising club of Chambly and were not too far from being edged out, when the men’s doubles almost saw the French pair win and take it to a 2-2 tie, which could have then put the Danes into jeaopardy. TSS, however, secured the men’s doubles – and the mixed rght after for a final 4-1 victory in the semi-final.

Unexpected points

In the final, points didn’t go as expected. The first point was taken by the Russians Sozonov and Sorokina (photo) against the experienced Mateusiak and Zieba. Hans-Kristian Vittinghus (photo) had the task to put his team back in the tie, but his giant opponent Vladimir Ivanov (photo) played perfectly as the Dane was obviously tired from his Spanish Open victory and his long week here in Beauvais. It went 25-23 for the Russian, then 21-11 in the second game.

Leading 2-0, the Russians were banking on Anastasia Prokopenko, who was facing Mette Poulsen (pictured below), but the latter took the advantage over the Russian national team player. The men’s doubles, once again, would be the key and instead of fielding doubles specialist Mateusiak, Kjelsden once again chose Vittinghus to partner Skaarup – Rasmussen. The Danes turned out to be too weak for Sozonov and Ivanov, who took it home in straight games, before the London bronze medallists Vislova/Sorokina ended the job by a clear 21-13, 21-14 success over Poulsen/Zieba.

The absence of Joachim Fischer Nielsen was crucial this week for TSS, who were also missing a key player in the men’s doubles, but all credit to the Russians, who played a great tournament.

The party ended with the speaker singing the Russian National Anthem before the whole team followed him up in laughs.

All results HERE

Raphaël Sachetat

About Raphaël Sachetat

Raphael is the Chief Editor of Badzine International. He is the founder of the website together with Jean François Chauveau. After many years writing for the BWF and many publications around the world about badminton, he now leads a team of young and dynamic writers for Badzine.