- What happened -
The final of the fifth round of the UCI Cycle-ball World Cup in Krofdorf (GER) was an absolute thriller. Defending champions RMC Stein, comprising cousins Gerhard and Bernd Mlady, faced off against former UCI World Champions Patrick Schnetzer and Markus Bröll (RC Höchst/AUT). The Austrians took a 4-2 lead before the Germans pegged them back to 4-4. Höchst made it 5-4 with 30 seconds to go, then Stein equalised once again only for the Austrians to win it with the last attack of the match.
This was the second World Cup win in as many attempts for Schnetzer and Bröll. "Since going down in the final of the World Cup event in November 2017, Patrick and Markus have gone undefeated," said club spokesman Heimo Lubetz.
Both Höchst and Stein made it through to the final at a canter, winning all their qualifying matches and each notching up more than 30 goals in the process. Group I saw a real battle for the second semi-final spot with three teams each ending up on six points. Goal difference was the deciding factor and saw local heroes Sascha Götz and Luca Wagner of RSV Krofdorf make it through to the knock-out stages for the first time in three attempts, after 2014 and 2015. The semis proved to be a bridge too far, however, with Stein defeating them 6-2. In the other semi-final. Höchst won an all-Austrian match 10-1 against two-time European U-23 Champions Kevin Bachmann and Stefan Feurstein of Dornbirn/Sulz. The latter nevertheless won the third-placed match 9-4 over Krofdorf.
- What's next? -
The 2018 UCI Cycle-ball World Cup #6, in Sangerhausen, Germany > 29 September
- Focus on Sangerhausen (Max Rückschloss / Eric Haedicke) - GER -
Not many young cycle-ball teams get this kind of chance. Max Rückschloss and Eric Haedicke are playing their first season on the senior circuit and their team – RSV Sangerhausen – have been given a wildcard to compete in the 6th round of the UCI World Cup on 29 September. They are currently ranked No.1 in their age group and have won the European U-19 championships twice in a row. Recently they added the German U-23 Cup to their trophy cabinet for the first time and soon they will be going for promotion to the top level of the Bundesliga, for which the World Cup event will be perfect preparation.