Sunday, 3 July 2011

Open Europeans, Helsinki : Echegoyen and Skudina will meet in Sunday's Match Racing final

by Soili Hirvonen

It was another exciting day at the Open Europeans on Saturday, when the Women's Match Racing finalists were decided at Hernesaari. In the end it was Spain's Tamara Echegoyen and Russia's Ekaterina Skudina who emerged victorious from the elimination rounds.

Skudina defeated Silvia Roca Mata of Spain in the semi-finals, winning in three straight matches. Echegoyen finished with the same record against Mandi Mulder of the Netherlands.

The title will be decided on Sunday between Echegoyen and Skudina, whereas Mulder and Roca Mata fill fight for the bronze medal. The final races will start at 11 o'clock.

Drama in the quarter-finals

Earlier today in the quarter-finals, a dramatic battle was fought between Anne-Claire Le Berre (FRA) and Silvia Roca Mata. Le Berre's team first took a 2-0 lead, but Roca Mata snatched the next three starts and eventually came through as the winner.

Fellow Spaniard Echegoyen beat local favourite Silja Lehtinen with three wins against one. Lehtinen was understandably disappointed after her team's defeat.

Mandi Mulder gave no chance to her opponent, Olivia Price of Australia. Mulder's team advanced to the semi-finals with three straight wins.

Also Ekaterina Skudina and her crew were in excellent form already in the quarter-finals. They didn't allow Rita Goncalves (POR) a single win, defeating the Portuguese team 3-0.

Women's Match Racing, semi-final results:

Tamara Echegoyen (ESP) vs. Mandi Mulder (NED) 3-0
Silvia Roca Mata (ESP) vs. Ekaterina Skudina (RUS) 0-3

Women's Match Racing, quarter-final results:

Silja Lehtinen (FIN) vs. Tamara Echegoyen (ESP) 1-3
Olivia Price (AUS) vs. Mandi Mulder (NED) 0-3
Rita Goncalves (POR) vs. Ekaterina Skudina (RUS) 0-3
Silvia Roca Mata (ESP) vs. Anne-Claire Le Berre (FRA) 3-2

Star class also began their European Championships on Saturday. After two races Greece's Emilios Papathanasiou and Alexandros Dragoutsis are in the lead. Racing will continue on Sunday at 11 o'clock.

Open Europeans 2011