Moscow, Russia, August 10, 2018 – Oleg Stoyanovskiy and Igor Velichko have a sizeable legacy to fill at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Moscow 4-Star tournament, but they are aiming to impress the legion fans that have come to support them.
Stoyanovskiy hails from Moscow, while Velichko comes from Obninsk, which is just over 100 kilometres from the Russian capital. It means that both players are well supported whenever they set foot on court.
“We are playing at home, in my home town and it is very special to play here,” Stoyanovskiy said.
“I’m playing in front of my family and my friends. I’m not sure how many, there’s a lot so I have to play well. I’m really enjoying playing here.”
Stoyanovskiy and Velichko teamed up at the start of the year, but they have quickly made their mark on the World Tour with silver at the Doha 4-Star Katara Open and gold at the Xiamen 4-Star.
The 21-year-old Stoyanovskiy knows what it takes to finish on the podium in Moscow as he and Artem Yarzutkin won bronze in 2017, just behind silver medallists Nikita Liamin and Viacheslav Krasilnikov.
Three years earlier Krasilnikov sent the Moscow crowd into raptures when he and Konstantin Semenov topped the podium after they defeated Latvia’s Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Janis Smedins in the gold medal match.
“A lot of Russian teams have played well here in Moscow,” Stoyanovskiy said. “Konstantin Semenov and Viacheslav Krasilnikov won here in 2014, last year we won two medals and I hope the special atmosphere helps us here again.
“The beginning of the season was great and we had two medals in a row, including our first gold in China. Around mid-season we dropped our level, but I hope we can end our season on a high note.
“We have the (FIVB) World Tour Finals in Hamburg, which is a reward for our big season and it will be an honour to play among the top-10 teams in the world.”
The Moscow 4-Star is the last 4-Star tournament in the 2017-18 season, and runs from August 8-12. The final tournament to take place is the Hamburg 2018 FIVB World Tour Finals that run from August 15-19.