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Action intensifies at goalball Euros A

Date: November 10, 2021

Category: Goalball

The semi-finallists of the 2021 International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) Goalball European Championships A have emerged following another day of incredible action in Samsun, Turkey, on Wednesday (10 November).

The competition is available live and on-demand at goalball.sportThe schedule and results are available at the Championships website here.

Pictures are available for editorial use here.

Paralympic champions and European title-holders Turkey came up against Germany in their women’s quarter-final.

Six goals from Sevda Altunoluk as well as Fatmagul Guler, Altunoluk’s sister Sevtap and Berfin Altan made sure of Turkey’s 10-0 mercy win.

A repeat of the 2019 gold medal game against Israel now awaits Turkey in the semi-final.

2019 silver medallists Israel – who entered the game as the only unbeaten side in the tournament – faced a tough fight against Great Britain to secure their place in the next round.

An excellent defensive game by the British kept the notoriously powerful shots of Lihi Ben David out of the net throughout the first half.

But Great Britain could not hold Ben David off forever. With 3:42 left on the clock she breached the British wall, following up two minutes later to double Israel’s score and end the match 2-0.

A player from Israel piggy-backs onto a teammate
Credit: Ryo Ichikawa

The Turkish men also got safely through to the next stage, but not before a strong challenge from Russia that saw the hosts nursing a narrow one goal lead at half-time.

Sensing they needed to shift gear, Turkey’s half-time team talk spurred Ebubekir Kara into action two minutes in to the second period. Russia held their opponents off for five more minutes before Tuncay Karakaya broke their lines three times to pull away further.

Russia had no reply and Bilal Tekin joined the party for Turkey, adding one more goal to end the match 8-2.

Turkey will face 2019 runners-up Ukraine on Thursday (11 November) after they came-up against Finland.

The Ukrainians opened-up the scoring with a trio of goals. Vasyl Oliinyk powered one in, followed by two for Rodion Zhyhalin.

But Finland reduced the deficit by two before half-time, Erkki Miinala with the successful shots.

Joni Ylonen then levelled the score to bring Finland right back in the game. But Zhyhalin had other ideas, peppering the Finnish net with four goals. Miinala clawed one back for Finland but the damage was already done. Zhyhalin secured one more strike to end the scoring at 8-4 to Ukraine.


A high-scoring game between Tokyo 2020 bronze medallists Lithuania and newly promoted Montenegro saw the newcomers lay down a tough challenge.

Nerijus Montvydas grabbed six of Lithuania’s seven goals in the opening period, but goals from brothers Nikola and Marko Nikolic kept them honest.

Montenegro were not prepared to leave the competition without a fight. Despite seven goals flying in from Lithuania in the second-half, Nikola Nikolic still managed to add another four goals.

Justas Pazarauskas, Montvydas, Normantas Prusinskas and Arturas Jonikaitis all added their names to the scoresheet for Lithuania to end the match 15-9.

Lithuania will play defending champions Germany in the semi-finals after they got past Belgium.

Opening the scoring after just 14 seconds, Belgian Bruno Vanhove triggered a strong response from the Germans.

Oliver Hoerauf levelled the score at 07:51 but Belgium’s Klison Mapreni struck back to reclaim the lead.

Hoerauf then came alive, netting four goals to put some clear air between the two sides. Tom Vanhove then kept Belgium in touch to take his team to the first buzzer.

Michael Dennis added his name to the scoresheet for Germany at the re-start. Bruno Vanhove gained one more, but Dennis added another to secure the win at 7-4.

Belgium will play Montenegro and Russia will clash with Finland in the placement games on Thursday.

Two German goalball players smile for the camera and clench their fists in celebration


Current world champions Russia ended the dreams of the French as they triumphed 10-2 over the Paris 2024 Paralympics hosts.

Elizabeta Kemesheva was responsible for half of Russia’s goals, including a strong series of four in the second-half.

France can however be pleased with their overall performance, which sees them remain in division A after being promoted earlier in 2021. They will play Ukraine in the placement games on Thursday.

Anja Christensen starred in Denmark’s attack against Ukraine to secure her side a semi-final place. Four goals from the Dane without reply caused the Ukrainians heads to drop in the first half. Yuliia Fakieieva tried to regain some ground with two goals after the buzzer, but it was not to be. The match ended 5-2.

A tie between Denmark and Russia on Thursday will determine who advances to the final.

Members of Denmark's women's goalball team smile and embrace
Credit Ryo Ichikawa

Elsewhere tomorrow, Great Britain will take on Germany in the other women’s placement game.

Following the semi-finals, the medal matches conclude competition on Friday (12 November).

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