Brazilian men are back in Xiamen – Strong US girls in round of 16
In a very competitive tournament, Brazilian men fought their way back to the beach volleyball world elite at the FIVB 4-star at Xiamen. The women’s competiton is being dominated by teams from US, Canada and Brazil.
The recently split Brazilian top team Alison and Andre both made it into the round of 16 with their new partners. While Alison/Álvaro Filho beat Heidrich/Gerson (Switzerland) in the first elimination round, Andre/George had a clear win against Popov/Gordieiev from Ukraine. Both Brazilian teams had lost one of their pool matches before so they needed to go through the round of 24. The third Brazilian top team Evandro/Bruno lost their first elimination match against German youngsters Thole/Wickler in a one-hour match (24:22, 16:21, 13:15). With US team Jake Gibb/Taylor Crabb and Canadians Pedlow/Schachter also moving to the round of 16, last year’s European dominance has been somewhat broken by American teams. Strong as ever before are the Polish teams Bryl/Fijalek and “hurry-up beach volleyball” team Kantor/Losiak who beat US legends Lucena/Dalhauseer in pool play (18:21, 21:19, 16:14) and Doha winners Grimalt/Grimalt (Chile) in the round of 24 (19:21, 30:28, 15:13).
On the women’s side, strong teams from the US, Canada and Brazil advanced to the second elimination round. Brooke Sweat/Kerri Walsh Jennings, Sara Hughes/Summer Ross and “A-team” April Ross/Alix Klineman will be competing in the round of 16. In pool play, the A-team had eliminated current Olympic champion Laura Ludwig with her new partner Margareta Kozuch. In the first elimination round, Ross/Klineman beat Bieneck/Schneider, one of five German women’s teams in the main draw. For Canada, top teams Brandie Wilkerson/Heather Bansley and Sarah Pavan Melissa Humana-Paredes won both their pool play matches and advanced directly to the round 16. With World Tour Final winners Agatha/Duda, The Hague winners Ana Patrícia/Rebecca and Talita/Taiana Lima, Brazil will have three women’s teams competing in the second elimination round.
The Xiamen 4-star will continue tomorrow with the round of 16 for both men and women. Semifinals and medal matches will be streamed on the FIVB Youtube channel.