Men’s doubles and mixed doubles world champions win gold at European Teqball Tour
The first European Teqball Tour event of 2022 in Lisbon, Portugal saw 2021 Teqball World Championships men’s doubles winners continue their winning form, as they overcame the world number one and two ranked players Csaba Banyik and Adam Blazsovics with a 2-0 (12-10, 12-3) victory.
A similar pattern emerged in the mixed doubles, with reigning world champions Banyik and Zsanett Janicsek claimed gold with a 2-1 (12-7, 7-12, 12-7) win over an impressive Brazilian duo of Leonardo Lindoso de Almeida and Vania Moraes Da Cruz.
There were 115 athletes from 20 countries participating in the indoor event in the Portuguese capital. In the men’s doubles, Banyik and Blazsovics cruised through to the quarter-finals with straight set wins. However, they were on the brink of an unexpected early exit when they faced their Hungarian compatriots Balazs Katz and Balazs Velkey in the last 8, eventually progressing with a 2-1 (8-12, 12-11, 12-10) win. The pre-tournament favourites then found themselves in testing circumstances in the semi-finals against France’s Hugo Rabeux and Julien Grondin after losing the second set, but showed the mentality of champions to qualify for the final by winning the decider 12-5.
In the other half of the draw, Marojevic and Mitro were largely in dominant form, dropping just one set in the whole knockout stage. However, they also faced a scare and had to battle hard to win a tight deciding set 13-11 against Czech Republic’s Lukas Flaks and Petr Bubniak in the last 16. However, convincing straight set wins in the quarter-finals (against Poland) and semi-finals (against Romania) meant they were the fresher of the two teams in the final. This freshness showed, especially in the second set, with the Serbian’s cruising to a 12-3 victory. Rabeux and Grondin took bronze with a 2-0 (12-8, 12-6) win over Romania’s Apor Gyorgydeak and Szabolcs Ilyes.
In the mixed doubles, Banyik and Janicsek had a relatively smooth ride to the final, progressing without dropping a set. Lindoso de Almeida and Vania Moraes Da Cruz showed equally dominant form, particularly in their 2-0 (12-8, 12-5) win over Serbia’s Mitro and Maja Umicevic.
The back and forth final, which went to a deciding set after each side took a set 12-7, was on a knife-edge in front of an excited crowd. The Brazilians looked on track to upset the reigning world champions, but the Hungarian duo showed composure in difficult moments and ruthlessness when on top, to emerge as champions with a 12-7 third set win.