After two victories on the first day of play, the two brothers David and Bennet Poniewaz confirmed their form on the beach volleyball court of the Technical University of Munich (TUM). In the group final, the two boys from Kiel beat the so far undefeated Spaniards Hugo Rojas and Óscar Jiménez Gutiérrez with 2:1 sets (14:21, 21:16, 15:12). They qualified directly for the round of sixteen on Wednesday.
In the second game played by a German team, Dan John (Tübingen) and Eric Stadie (Berlin) faced the Swiss U20 Vice European Champions Florian Breer and Yves Haussener. A mere 1.80 metres tall, the Swiss duo specialising in a strong defensive game beat the Germans in both sets (21:16, 21:17). "This did not go according to plan," said Stadie. Breer and Haussener demoted the Germans to second place in the group - and thus to the intermediate round. "We still want to rile them up a bit," Stadie announced. And that's exactly what they did. With a clear victory against the Ukrainians Loitarenko Dmytro and Serhii Stasenko (21:13, 21:14), the second German men's team also enters the round of sixteen.
The women's duo Lisa-Sophie Kotzan (Berlin) and Julika Hoffmann (Ludwigsburg) were also able to fight their way into the intermediate round after a slightly difficult start. The Latvian opponents Alise Elizabete Pastare and Ruta Treija started off strong and won the first set 12:21. In sets two and three, however, the German women returned to form (21:12, 15:9), turned the match around, and ultimately gained their well-deserved victory. Yet, in the intermediate round against Asami Shiba and Satono Ishitsubo from Japan, they lost out. The Germans had to admit defeat when their opponents claimed victory (21:14, 21:17).
The day ended with bad news for Leonie Klinke (Stuttgart) and Leonie Körtzinger (Hamburg). In the morning, the team had still managed to qualify for the intermediate round at the last minute as third in the group. In the final preliminary round match against Marta Duda and Marta Lodej from Poland, they narrowly avoided elimination and won 2:1 sets (21:12, 18:21, 15:13). Unfortunately, the joy didn't last long. Due to injury, team Körtzinger/Klinke had to retire from the competition.
"Our team Klinke/Körtzinger had to give up due to Leonie Klinke being injured. We currently suspect that it is a strain or torn muscle fibre. An orthopaedic surgeon will find out more tomorrow. At this point, we are unable to judge if and to what extent a start at the U22 European Championship in Riga will be affected by this," explains David Storek, head of the German delegation. Leonie Klinke's exit was bitter. "She played really well," the national coach jörg Ahmann said.
The intermediate round is now finished. With the Poniewaz brothers and John/Stadie, two German teams are still fighting for the title. U23 national coach Ahmann sums up: "I hope that the two men's teams will build on their performance. They are facing feasible opponents." He considers the Poniewaz twins to have a greater chance, as "this team is better coordinated”.