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CRO W: Quarterfinal Battles Begin

by WoV
Photo: Croatian Volleyball Federation

Croatian women’s Superliga has reached its most exciting phase, the fight for the championship title, after the regular season of 22 rounds. The first quarterfinal matches are set to start on Wednesday, April 3, promising thrilling volleyball action as teams vie for a spot in the semifinals. The top-seeded HAOK Mladost and second-placed OK Dinamo, both with 40 points and last year’s finalists, await the winners in the semifinals. Mladost, the defending champion, seeks to retain its title, having swept last year’s final series with 3-0 victories.

In the first quarterfinal match, a city derby pits Ribola Kaštela against Marina Kaštela at GD Kaštela. Marina finished the regular season in third place with a 14-8 record, while Ribola was sixth with an equal number of wins and losses. With both matches held in the same venue, home court advantage is nullified, putting the focus on current form. Despite Marina’s victory over Ribola in their last Superliga encounter, Ribola’s recent performances suggest they might have an edge. However, Marina’s past success, including 11 consecutive victories and a semifinal run last year, establishes them as favorites.

The second quarterfinal match features fourth-placed Kelteks visiting fifth-placed Osijek on Wednesday, April 3, at SD Jug. This match follows closely after their last encounter in the final round of the regular season, where Kelteks emerged victorious with a 3-0 win. Despite Kelteks’ historical advantage in head-to-head matchups, this quarterfinal is expected to be closely contested, as evidenced by the teams’ split victories this season. The return match is scheduled for Saturday in Karlovac, with a golden set to decide the semifinalist in case of a tie.

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