Agipi teamThe European preliminaries in four locations, leading up to team final, have ended in advancement for Agipi from France(left), Futbol Clube de Porto from Portugal, GTB Alcantarilla from Spanje, Coral Colon from Spanje and as “best second” BC Deurne from Belgium. They will go to Istanbul on 6-8 June, to take on title holders Bahcelievler from Turkey.
The best matches from the group stages:
Marco Zanetti-Tonny Carlsen 40-19 in 9. Zanetti started off with 23-1 in 3 innings, runs of 5-12-6. The first point of his run of 12 was a fluke.
Filippos Kasidokostas-Salvatore Papa 40-15 in 10.
Torbjörn Blomdahl-Michael Nilsson 40-34 in 11 (Blomdahl closing out the match with 12-0-8).
Peter Ceulemans-Dave van Geel 40-16 in 12.
Flight Bronshoj (Denmark):

Multiple title holders Agipi were close to elimination in Kopenhagen. The French foursome drew with BK Gröndal and won the other matches, against Turkish Mecidiyeköy and Austrian BC Elite. BK Gröndal copied that performance.Agipi almost lost out on the win, in the last match against the Turks. Birol Uymaz had the opportunity to force a draw, and Agipi’s elimination (after the loss by a weak Jérémy Bury against Mehmet Goren), had he played an undecided against Jean-Christoph Roux. The young Turk needed three points in the equalizing inning, but only made one.This made Agipi the flight winner, with five match points and an average of 1.439, ahead of BK Gröndal with five points and 1.383.Frédéric Caudron, Mehmet Goren and Lars Dunch were unbeaten in this flight.Selim Özden had the high run (18) in his match against Andreas Horvath.

Antacantrilla teamFlight Bottrop:

The Spanish foursome of GTB Alcantarilla(left) won the flight, but it had a hard battle with Leca Fute Bol club first. Jef Philipoom and Francis Forton won the key matches for the Portugese, but it was not enough to advance.

The top match between Alcantarailla and Leca ended in 4-4: Jef Philipoom beat Peter Ceulemans (40-29 in 27) and Francis Forton beat Diego Guirao 40 – 38 in 43.Ruben Legazpi (40-21 in 29 against Vitor Fernandes) and Jaime Sanchez (40-22 in 39 against Jose Escudeiro) evened the score.Leca Fute Bol also drew with the Germans of Bottroper BA (again wins for Philipoom and Forton).Peter Ceulemans had started the tournament with a splendid match against Dave van Geel: 40-16 in 12 innings.
Flight Vienna:
The best encounter in these preliminaries was the match between Futbol Clube de Porto and BC Deurne, two teams that would eventually qualify.Eddy Merckx and Dani Sánchez produced fireworks in their match, won by the Spaniard by 40-35 in 15 innings (2.667/2.333, runs of 17 for Merckx and 14 for Sánchez).Dick Jaspers won his battle with Torbjörn Blomdahl by 40-20 in 19 innings and Jean Paul de Bruijn won for Deurne by 40-35 (35), beating Rui Manuel Costa. Porto’s young player Joao Ferreira beat Davy van Havere 40-35 in 43, ending the match in a 4-4.The Portugese did the important groundwork in their 8-0 victories over BSK Union and Bristol Odense. Torbjörn Blomdahl won the Swedish clash with Michael Nilsson: 40-34 in 11 innings: averages 3.636/3.091.
Michael Nilsson had to take it on the chin twice more: Dick Jaspers beat him 40-27 in 14, Martin Horn did it 40-26 in 14.FC Porto and BC Deurne ended with seven match points, Porto having a two game point advantage (28 against 26).FC Porto’s strongest line-up was Blomdahl, Sánchez, Rui Costa and Ferreira. Dick Jaspers and Dani Sánchez signed up for the best averages of the weekend in their group: Jaspers 2.285, Sánchez 2.191.The Turkish team of Etasis showed up with only three players: Hamit Akkaya had visa problems and could not make the trip.
Final standings:
1 Porto 7-1.402-14
2 Deurne 7-1.497-17
3 Bristol, 4 Etasis, 5 BSK Union.
Flight Sabadell:
In spite of a glorious match by Filippos Kasidokostas (40-15 in 10 innings against Salvatore Papa), Andernos did not manage to advance. Coral Colon won the flight.The Spaniards had a strong leading player in Nikos Polychronopoulos, who remained unbeaten, getting the better of Kasidokostas by 40-36 in 29 innings. José Maria Mas and Jérôme Barbeillon also won all their matches. The Frenchman needed only 12 innings in his last match against Ronny Lindemann. Kasidokostas, by the way, lost three out of four matches: against Leppens, Polychronopoulos and Hendriksen.Andernos came second in the flight, German champion BCC Witten third.
Results Group A,Results Group B,Results Group C,Results Group D.
Frits Bakker,Kozoom.
Marco Zanetti-Tony Carlsen:40-19(9).Agipi-BK Grondal match
Frederic Caudron-Can Capak:40-21(19).Agipi-Mecidiyekoy SC match