After last year’s successful event, the FIVB World Tour returns to Itapema (Brazil). The $300,000 Itapema Open main draw starts on Thursday followed by elimination rounds on Friday and Saturday and the the medal matches on Sunday.
Last year the Brazilian hosts dominated the event and claimed both gold medals. Defending champions on the men’s side are Evandro Goncalves/Andre Loyola who beat Norwegian youngsters Anders Mol/Christian Sørum in the final. This year Evandro will play with reigning Olympic champion Bruno Oscar Schmidt while his former partner Andre has teamed up with George Wanderley. Besides the Norwegian Vikings, other international top teams competing this week are Poland’s Grzegorz Fijalek/Michal Bryl as well as Piotr Kantor/Bartosz Losiak, Netherlands’ Alexander Brouwer/Robert Meeuwsen and Latvia’s Aleksandrs “Lion King” Samoilovs/Janis Smedins.
On the women’s side Agatha/Duda will try to defend their title against other Brazilian top teams such as Xiamen Open winners Ana Patricia Silva/Rebecca Cavalcanti. The Brazilians will be challenged by several international top teams like Heather Bansley/Brandie Wilkerson (Canada), three-time Olympic champion Kerri Walsh Jennings and Brooke Sweat (USA) or European champions Sanne Keizer/Madelein Meppelink (Netherlands).
You can check out schedule and results at the official event page.