Asturias is not what you can say a "pelotazale" region, but the Covadonga Group organizes the oldest national competition of this sport: 70 editions will be completed this year. In it, local fans and many from other provinces can see in action the best players in the world.
This year the International Ball Week has an added incentive: to check if Emiliano Skufca is capable of breaking the record of triumphs he currently shares with Alberto Ancizu, both with nine.
The tournament will start at 7:00 pm on Friday with the match between the Berroqui-Ramos and Marcos Pérez-Ciaurriz pairs in the paddle mode, which will be followed by Mikel Sanz-Skufca and Plano-Arroitia in shovel. short. The other two semifinals will be on Saturday with Ayarra-Insausti against Casterán-Purroy in palette, and Laskoiti-Echevarren against Ibai Barón-Labiano in short spade.
The majority of players of the Spanish national team will be in the front of the group with the exception of Carlos Baeza, who has just been injured and can not play. Mikel Sanz will do it in his place. In the stands, as always, will be attentive national coach José Luis Arcelus.
Emiliano Skufca can become the player with more triumphs in all history, although he still has far more participation, something that will be very difficult to snatch from Ancizu himself, who did not fail in any edition from 1967 to 1988. During these years he imposed on nine occasions and with different partners. His first triumph was in the year 1970 with the Guipuzcoan Izaguirre, in the 72 with the Carlos group, in the 74 with his partner of the Infante Group and in the 76 and 77 with Vega, with which he also won in the 79 edition and with which he formed one of the couples that gave more success to the Covadonga Group. In the middle he won with the Navarrese Ezponda. Six editions passed until the eighth victory, which was in the year 85, with Riojan Garrido, to say goodbye in 89 with the also Rioja Juan Pablo in an edition commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of the club and in which Ancizu put end to his sporting career that led him to be world champion. "Skufca deserves to beat the record not only because he is a great professional, but because he is a great person," said Ancizu at the tournament presentation.
The Group's commitment to this sport comes from far. As the former president of the Spanish Federation, Alberto Cortina, recalled, "no president ever put any inconvenience to organize this week."