Introducing the participants ... Part 2
By the way, if we continue to talk about connection between the clubs, the St. Petersburg team has several players who have become champions of Russia, both with Lokomotiv and Kristall. These are Yuri Krasheninnikov, Dmitry Shishin, Maxim Chuzhkov and Mauricio, with only one person in the Moscow team – Alexander Elizarov, who led the “railwaymen” to victory in the Russian championship in his first year at the head of the Moscow club.
Most notably, it is Alexander Elizarov with whom the most high-profile victories of "Kristall" in all tournaments are associated. Alexander also worked in tandem with the current “Kristall” head coach Angelo Shirinzi, moreover, it was this coaching duo that led the ream in 2012 in the first Russian season of the team of Oleg Barinov.
Lokomotiv Moscow will take part in the InterCup for the first time this year. Despite the fact that the main goal of the team, for sure, is to prepare for the season, the motivation should be high. Still - "railwaymen" are the owners of all possible Russian and international trophies: five-time champions of Russia, four-time winners of the Russian Cup, twice winners of the Mundialito among clubs, as well as winners of the Euro Winners Cup and the Russian Super Cup. What title is missing? Right, InterCup.
In spite of Lokomotiv is a newcomer, there is hardly a single representative of this team who did not take part in this tournament. Even Vitaly Pogodin was a player of the exhibition match in 2012. Perhaps the record holder in terms of participation in the traditional St. Petersburg spring tournament is Loko coach Alexander Elizarov, who has not missed a single one since 2011 (including OBSL). Accordingly, Alexander has a rich experience of winning in these competitions, however, with another club.
In the current draw, Lokomotiv will miss many players. The reason for this is the participation of the Russian national team in the tournament in the year of the home World Cup with the strongest, not in experimental or youth, as it was before, roster.
But "InterCup" will be a great chance to prove themselves for those players who will remain to defend the honor of "railwaymen" in the absence of Russian national team players.
"Kristall", representing the host city of "Intercup 2021", is one of the most titled teams in the world, and could rightfully do without any representations. However, let's turn to the history of the traditional St. Petersburg international indoor tournament, where, by the way, "Kristall" has the largest number of titles: 2013, 2015, 2017, 2018.
Like the National team of Belarus, the team, then led by Alexander Yelizarov, made its debut at the international tournament, which is held under the arches of “Dynamite”, back in 2011, taking a modest eighth place at the winter Grand Prix, but in the spring of the same year entered the third line of the standings. Having performed in the averages both in winter and spring in 2012 (4th and 5th place, respectively), the team, meanwhile, began its active development and already in 2013 declared for the tournament as silver medalists of the Russian Championship.
It was 2013 that became a happy year for the orange-blacks, when in the final of the spring draw the team managed to win a strong-willed victory in overtime over the Novosibirsk "Joker", and it is worth recalling that it was the same year that "Kristall" won the title of Champion of Russia for the first time.
“Kristall” managed to become two-time winners of our tournament, beating the Belarusian national team in the final in 2015, which was truly golden for the team from the banks of the Neva River – the squad became the winner of all the tournaments in which it took part. In 2017, the team takes part in the first draw of the" Intercup " in the status of the current champions of the country, confirming this with a victory in the final over a team, famous for one of the most technical players in Europe – Spain. Thus, Kristall becomes the first winner of the highest level of "Intercup" awards.
In 2018, Angelo Shirinzi leads the Russian club to another victory under the arches of Dynamite. In 2019, Kristall will once again take part in the Intercup in the rank of the current national champions. However, having held a valid match against the Russian National Team, " Kristall " allows them to take revenge for the 2018 final, and for the first time remains without golden medals of "Intercup".
And it will be incredibly difficult for petersburgers to regain the title this year. Since on the eve of the home World Cup, the backbone of " Kristall " is an integral part of the Russian National team, it will play for the main team of the country. But the rest of the players will have an incredibly significant incentive to prove everything to everyone.