Traditionally, the Serbian Cup finals are taking place on the same day, in the same venue for men and women. This year, the hosts were ZOK UB, from the central Serbian city of Ub. The matches were played on Sunday, with nearly 3,500 spectators in the stands and more than 700,000 people watching the competition live on TV – a great spectacle in which Partizan Efbet BEOGRAD retained their men’s title, and ZOK UB lifted the women’s trophy for the second time in history.
Both matches ended up lasting for five sets, giving fans a total of seven hours of happiness and joy in an afternoon that was rightly called a true volleyball festival.
In the first match, Partizan Efbet edged Vojvodina NS Seme NOVI SAD 3-2 (21-25, 25-22, 18-25, 25-19, 15-7), after 132 minutes of play, thus winning their ninth Cup title overall in the men’s competition. In the second match, ZOK UB beat Jedinstvo STARA PAZOVA after completing a stunning comeback 3-2 (25-27, 19-25, 25-23, 25-23, 15-12) in 133 minutes, to claim their second Cup title in the history of the women’s competition.
The most valuable players of the Cup finals (MVP) were Milija Mrdak, the opposite of Partizan Efbet, and Bojana Ćelić, receiver of ZOK UB.
After completion of both matches, the awarding ceremony took place where all four teams got their rightfully deserved prizes.
Gyula Mester, President of the Volleyball Federation of Serbia, and Ivan Knežević, Secretary General, presented Slađana Erić, team captain of ZOK UB, and Milija Mrdak, team captain of Partizan Efbet, with the Cup Winners’ trophies.
Vesna Djurišić, Vice-President of the Volleyball Federation of Serbia, and Danilo Mrdja, Competitions Director, presented the players of ZOK UB with the gold medals, while Petar Bogunović, President of the Regional Volleyball Association of Vojvodina and Vice-President of the Volleyball Federation of Serbia, and Dragutin Ćuk, Technical Director, presented the players of Partizan Efbet with the shiniest awards.
Vesna Djurišić and Danilo Mrdja gave away also the consolation trophies for the Serbian Cup finalists to Isidora Kockarević, team captain of Jedinstvo, and Petar Krsmanović, team captain of Vojvodina.
Zlatko Petrović, member of the Executive Board in the Volleyball Federation of Serbia, and Mladen Maran, President of the Volleyball Association of Belgrade, handed over the silver medals to the players of Jedinstvo, while Boris Kolarević, supreme referee, and Goran Gradinski, President of the Association of Volleyball Referees of Serbia, presented the players of Vojvodina with their consolation medals.
The prizes for the MVP players of the finals were presented by Vesna Djurišić and Danilo Mrdja, both representing the Volleyball Federation of Serbia, and Nenad Ralević, member of the Board of Directors of Banka Poštanska Štedionica (Postal Savings Bank), the general sponsor of the Volleyball Federation of Serbia.
In between the first and the second set of the men’s final, Goran Gradinski, President of the Association of Volleyball Referees of Serbia, presented Ljubomir Kovačević with a plaque for his immeasurable contribution to the work of the referee organisation.
In between the first and the second set of the women’s final, Ivan Knežević, Secretary General of the Volleyball Federation of Serbia, presented Dr Jovan Mladenović, long-time President of the Volleyball Association of Kosovo and Metohija, a special plaque for his great contribution to the development and improvement of Volleyball, while Petar Bogunović, Vice-President of the federation, presented Milan Jovanović, long-term President of the Association of Volleyball Clubs of the Republic Leagues, with the same award.