The ‘Nikolovs’ - Father and son play Challenge Cup game together in Sofia

Sofia, Bulgaria, November 30, 2018. Volleyball connects – and this applies to members of the same family as well. We know that sometimes Volleyball is a sort of a family affair and this is exactly what happened last night in Sofia when Bulgaria’s Volleyball legend Vladimir Nikolov took to the court together with his son Aleksandar in the #CEVChallengeCupM fixture between Levski SOFIA and Perungan Pojat ROVANIEMI of Finland.

‘Vlado’ Nikolov is a true Volleyball legend in Bulgaria and abroad as well – with a resume that includes a Champions League crown with TOURS VB in 2005, a CEV Cup title with Bre Banca Lannutti CUNEO in 2010 as well as bronze medals from the 2006 World Championship and 2009 European Championship with the Bulgarian ‘Lions’. Nikolov announced his retirement from competitive sport a couple of years ago – but at 41, he returned to the court and scored as many as 12 points for Levski SOFIA in their 1-3 loss to ROVANIEMI. This figure made him the third best scorer of the match for his team behind Trifon Lapkov and Ivan Petrov, who scored 13 times apiece.

Aleksandar Nikolov and his legendary father Vladimir together on court in Sofia.

However, the most emotional moment for the fans at Hristo Botev sports hall in Sofia came in the second set of the matchup with ROVANIEMI, when Nikolov’s son Aleksandar stepped onto the court to play along with his legendary father. Aleksandar had the honour and privilege of playing a European match together with his dad right on the eve of his 15th birthday.

Volleyball is a family affair and despite the eventual loss, both Vladimir and Aleksandar will certainly cherish memories of this match for years to come.