Once again, sorry for the silence over the past two weeks. In my absence, the Pairs Championship finalists have been decided: the final will be held on Sunday 28th April in Bilbao and will be between Martinez de Irujo – Zabaleta and Berasaluze II – Albisu. The former pairing’s presence in the last two represents no surprise whatsoever, but Berasaluze and Albisu’s late charge for the prize has been unexpected. They lost their first semi final match to Beongoetxea and Beroiz but thereafter beat Olaizola II and Ibai Zabala 22-14. Then they defeated their opponents in the final by the same margin to seal their place. This result must fill them with confidence, but will lightning strike twice for the outsiders? Irujo and Zabaleta won their other two semis, beating Olaizola and Zabala 22-8 and Bengoetxea and Beroiz 22-13. In the dead rubber last weekend, Olaizola and Zabala signed off with a win, beating Bengoetxea and Beroiz 22-15. All the results from the competition up until this point are here and the semi final table is here.
In the Promocion championship, Rico IV and Untoria have sealed their place in the final despite a narrow loss to Tainta and Ladis Galarza last week. Gorka-Cecilio and Apezetxea-Larrinaga will play off for the other place in a sudden death encounter in Pamplona on Saturday. All the results are here with the current table here.
The first of two Aspe previews for the Manomanista Championship took place last week. Ezkurdia came through to beat Aritz Lasa 22-20, thereby sealing his place in the draw proper. In the the second preview which takes place tonight in Vitoria-Gasteiz, Zubieta takes on Merino II. Asegarce will hold a preview tomorrow between Arretxe II and Olaetxea, as well as a game between Elezkano II and Larunbe for entry into the Promocion manomanista.
Matches on ETB this weekend are:
Friday 19th April, Vitoria-Gasteiz
22:00 (CEST) TITIN III – MERINO II v JAUNARENA – PENAGARIKANO
Followed by ZUBIETA v MERINO II Manomanista Preview
Sunday 21st April, Eibar
17:00 (CEST) ARITZ LASA – MERINO v MENDIZABAL III – PASCUAL
Followed by XALA – LASKURAIN v RETEGI BI – BARRIOLA
To watch, go to http://www.eitb.tv, https://www.eitb.eus/es/television/etb-sat/or https://www.eitb.eus/es/deportes/deporte-en-directo/