San Marino, Thursday June 01st 2017 – Full of emotions the third morning in XVII Games of small states of Europe. Swimming and basketball gave their best, waiting for the medals on the afternoon.
SWIMMING – Third day in Serravalle’s pool, opened by girls, on 50 meters free style. Their respective heats are Bryndis Run Hansen (Iceland, 26.51) and Kalia Antoniou (Cyprus, 26.74). Beatrice Felici qualifies for the final, with the fourth absolute time (27.33), while Carlotta Bulzoni, fifth in the heat and credited for the tenth time (27.92), is excluded. Among men, he easily wins his heat Julien Henx (Luxembourg, 23.10), imitated in the second group by Andrew Chetcuti (Malta, 23.25). For 41 cents Davide Bernardi would not qualify for the final, ninth absolute and fifth of his heat (24.78), but the subsequent forfait declared by Pit Brandenburger gave him the pass for the last act of the afternoon. Same lucky loser pass for Raffaele Tamagnini, tenth time but qualified thanks to icelandic Kristofer Sigursson forfait. On 100-meter breaststroke, among women, good performance for Hrafnhildur Luthersdottir (Iceland, 1.11.68), while her fellow Karen Mist Arngeirsdottir (1.16.24) conquers first place in the other group. Pass to the final also for Linda Canti, sixth time for her (1.19.50). In women’s 200-meter freestyle, two solid performances by Julia Hassler (Liechtenstein, 2.06.72) and Monique Olivier (Luxembourg, 2.06.78). Among the eight finalists, there will be also home swimmers Sara Lettoli (6th overall with 2.08.22) and Elisa Bernardi (seventh absolute, 2.10.78). Men’s 200 meters freestyle saw Luxembourg dominating, first with Raphael Stacchiotti (1.56.60) then with Pit Brandernburger (1.56.04). Two Sammarinesis, Davide Bernardi (1.59.24) and Cristian Santi (1.59.44), did not qualify for the final, respectively ninth and tenth absolute time. In the afternoon, therefore, the finals of 50 m and 200 m free style (men and women), and 100 m female breaststroke. Great program ending with 4x100m medley relay, both men’s and women’s.
SHOOTING – In men’s rifle 10 m, morning qualifying round for the eleven athletes enrolled. Only eight passes, with excellent performance by Montenegrins Nemanja Obradovic and Milos Bozovic, in the lead after the first six series. Close to the podium also Luxembourg’s Charly Moes, and Cyprus’ Alexandros Christoforou.
BASKET – Great wait for Montenegro-Cyprus, probably the decisive match for the gold medal in the men’s tournament. Cyprus wins 81-71, in a very exciting game, with a flashing start of Cypriot, ahead for 25-12 at the end of the first quarter. Then an alarm sounds for the Balkan boys in the second quarter: shocking partial of 12-0, to rebalancing the score. At the break it’s 38-38, after Montenegro has also gone ahead, reached by a triple of Sizopoulos. The emotions continue in the third quarter, where the balance remains unchanged. The partial 10 minutes from the last siren is 56-55 for Cypriots. The flow of the game runs to Cyprus, in last quarter, thanks to a solid performance, without fouls bonus. Montenegro is too nervous, and a triple shot from Stylianou, 30 seconds to the end, is just a final mark on path to Cyprus victory and, probably, the gold medal.
VOLLEY – In the third-day opening match, no problem for the girls of Cyprus who defeat Liechtenstein’s opponents for 3-0 with 25-8, 25-16, 25-13. In the evening, great expectations for the girls of San Marino, opposed to Luxembourg. In the afternoon, Iceland and Malta will play in “Alessandro Casadei” gym, both with a win and a defeat after two matches.