Teams Bozenk and Kolbl win men’s and women’s titles in Slovenia

The Slovenian National Snow Volleyball Championships took place for the first time since 2019

Bozenk and Kolbl won the men’s and women’s titles of the 2023 Slovenian National Snow Volleyball Championships held on Sunday in Krvavec.

Denis Robida of team Bozenk and Sara Valencic of team Kolbl were named Most Valuable Players (MVPs) of the tournament. The competition was organised by the Volleyball Federation of Slovenia for the first time since 2019.

Slovenia’s 2023 national snow volleyball champions Kolbl (women) and Bozenk (men) (Photo credits: Kolektiff Images / OZS)

Eight men’s and six women’s teams took part in the event.

Team Bozenk, made up of Alan Kosenina, Danijel Pokersnik, Denis Robida and Tadej Bozenk claimed the men’s title. It was the third in a row in Tadej Bozenk’s snow volleyball career and second in a row for Denis Robida. After winning the 2019 title along with Anze Bahc, now Bozenk and Robida defended the crown in the company of Kosenina and Pokersnik.

In the final in Krvavec, Bozenk hammered out an emphatic 2-0 (15-10, 15-4) victory over team Felkar, consisting of David Renko, Gregor Felkar and Luka Weiss. The champions-to-be reached the semifinals without losing a single set in the two matches played. To advance to the final, they overcame the resistance of team Berk (Matevz Berk, Matic Leben and Sebastijan Sibau). Four years ago, Matevz Berk was one of Slovenia’s national team members on the inaugural FIVB Snow Volleyball World Tour.

This week, Pokersnik, Robida and Bozenk will represent Slovenia at this spring’s only stop on the European Volleyball Confederation (CEV) Snow Volleyball European Tour to be held in Wagrain, Austria.

"It's nice to stand on the top. I'm really happy that we got to the kind of game we've been showing in our most recent performances very quickly. But for a resounding result at international level, we will need to add to it," said Pokersnik. “I liked the atmosphere in Krvavec today. Many people came to see us and the weather held up. The organisation was at a high level and I hope that there will be as many such events as possible.”

In the other semifinal, Felkar outplayed team Lenic (Jaka Prevorcnik, Jost Lenic, Val Stojan and Zan Zajc), and went on to win bronze after a convincing 2-0 (15-12, 15-6) shutout of Berk.

The 2023 Slovenian National Snow Volleyball Championships were held in the beautiful setting of Krvavec (Photo credits: Kolektiff Images / OZS)

Team Kolbl, with Anastazija Znidar, Sara Valencic and Teja Kolbl on the squad, persevered through a tough three-set women’s final against team Gimpelj of Anja Mitrovic, Eva Pavlic and Kaja Gimpelj to come from behind and claim their first national title. The bronze went to team Kuzman, whose members Masa Premzl, Mateja Senicar and Sabina Kuzman won the third place match against team Rapnik (Elmina Rapnik, Spela Zaksek and Tjasa Vlepic).

Before that, in the semifinals, Kolbl defeated Kuzman and Gimpelj edged Rapnik.

"It wasn't easy to get to the final, and even in the final we weren't very convincing at first, but after losing the first set, we rallied quickly and ended up winning in three,” commented MVP Sara Valencic. “It seems to me that the competition is getting stronger and I hope that the level will continue to rise from year to year. We wanted to perform at the national championship for some time, but it was cancelled three times in a row. Now the competition was certainly impressive, especially since we were happy to win in the end."

The medallists of the 2023 Slovenian National Snow Volleyball Championships (Photo credits: Kolektiff Images / OZS)