The women of Asterix Avo Beveren have qualified for the semi-finals of the Belgian Cup. Kris Vansnick’s team defeated Oudegem in four sets in the quarterfinals. In the semi-finals, the Waaslanders will meet Bevo Roeselare in a back and forth match, but first the European relocation awaits on Tuesday at the Italian Imoco Conegliano.
It quickly became clear that Asterix Avo has learned a lot in the Champions League. With mature play, the Waasland women took distance in the first and second set. In the third set, the home team eased off the accelerator a little too emphatically, Oudegem took advantage and took the set win. The visitors seemed to be able to continue with the momentum afterwards, but were unable to maintain an early lead in the fourth set due to a sudden error.
“I am happy that after our beautiful European story we have also been able to confirm this in our own country,” said Kris Vansnick. “I was able to rotate a bit against Limal Ottignies, but against Oudegem we all had to be top. A motivated Oudegem, with a very strong Marlies Janssens, did not make it easy for us. However, we were dominant in terms of serving and that ultimately made the difference. Now we can focus again on the Champions League. On Tuesday we will play against Imoco Conegliano in Italy. We also want to show our DNA there. This means that we have to and want to bring our own game in attack and service. Please note that the Italians, who know me and the players well from the international circuit, will also prepare well and leave nothing to chance. I expect a sharp opponent, but that is all the opponents in our group. We are in the toughest series, but that also means six top posters.”
Oudegem lacks match rhythm
While Asterix Avo remains active on three fronts, Oudegem must mainly focus on the play-offs in the coming months. Although there will be two more European matches for the CEV Cup against Porto in the coming weeks. “The difference was in the race rhythm,” sighed Fien Callens. “While Asterix has already played six matches in the Champions League, we hardly have any match rhythm. I have only been training with this core for four weeks. The team clearly still lacks match rhythm and dynamics and the players are also still growing. Of course that’s not a pleasant feeling, but I’m a bit in two minds. From now on, our focus will be on our European component. We start this on Thursday with a home match against Porto. Before we get to that point, we will continue to work on our own accents during training. The match against Porto will be a match against a team with strong Brazilian and American players. It is those kinds of matches that we need to raise our level. We will see how far we will get, but we are motivated and want to work for it.”