Press release

Three Canadian men’s duos undefeated at FIVB SWATCH Junior World Championships


Canada's Aaron Nusbaum, right, and Grant O'Gorman won twice Thursday to help the three Canadian men's teams earn a 5-0 record after two of three pool play matches at the FIVB SWATCH Junior World Championships in Halifax, Canada

Halifax, Nova Scotia, August 30, 2012 – Playing the first two of three main draw pool play matches Thursday, the world’s best young-adult men’s duos are basking in the Halifax Harbor sunshine and the hot action on the court at the 2012 FIVB Beach Volleyball SWATCH Junior World Championships for players under the age of 21. This year’s 12th annual double-gender event started Wednesday in Halifax, a regional municipality of over 300,000 residents located in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia on the east coast of Canada.

Led by three teams from host-country Canada, 11 teams and nine countries are undefeated after the first day of men’s pool play.  Joining the three Canadian teams are one team each from Brazil, Czech Republic, Germany, Norway, Russia, Switzerland, the United States and Venezuela.

QUICK FACTS
The world championship event is being held through Sunday at the purpose-built beach volleyball complex on the Salter Lot of the Halifax Waterfront. This is the not only the second time in the event’s 12-year history that it is being held in North America, but also the second straight year in Halifax.

The teams were divided into eight four-team pools for round-robin play of three matches per team. The women began with two rounds on Wednesday and one on Thursday, while the men had two rounds on Thursday and will have one on Friday.

The top three teams in each pool (24 total) will advance to the single-elimination bracket phase of the tournament.  The women will begin their single elimination phase with two rounds on Friday followed by the women’s quarterfinals and semifinals on Saturday. Men will play their first elimination round on Friday, followed by the second round and quarterfinals on Saturday and the semifinals on Sunday morning.

The bronze and gold medal matches for each gender will be held on Sunday event at the SEA stadium center court.

OH, CANADA
Five teams are 2-0 and six are 1-0 following Thursday’s round robin play. As the host nation, Canada has three men’s teams and four women’s teams qualified into their respective fields and the three Canadian men’s teams started the championships in brilliant fashion with a combined record for the first day of 5-0.

In addition to last year’s final four finisher Garrett May and new teammate Dallas Keith, the sixth-seeded team here (2-0 on Thursday), the other Canadian’s men’s teams in the field are top-seeded Ben Chow/Nick Del Bianco (1-0), who finished ninth in Halifax last year and 26th-seeded Aaron Nusbaum/Grant O’Gorman, who won the bronze medal at the 2011 FIVB SWATCH Youth World Championships in Umag, Croatia.

May, playing for the fourth time in the FIVB SWATCH Junior World Championships, said after he and Keith soundly defeated teams from Guatemala and Thailand, “We’re a new team but Dallas isn’t a rookie.  He brings a lot of energy to the court which is something I always look for in a teammate because that helps motivate me. He chases after loose balls, celebrates points and helps keep my enthusiasm level very high. We are looking good so far. The first match in these tournaments is so tough because you don’t know what to expect for sure. We came out strong today but we will need to keep it up because this year’s field is as good or better than last year’s was.”

THE OTHER UNBEATENS
The other unbeaten teams with 2-0 records on Thursday are Germany’s eighth-seeded Fabian Schmidt/Dominik Stork, Venezuela’s 11th-seeded Jose Ruiz/Maikhol Salcedo and USA’s 19th-seeded Weston Carico/Parker Kalmbach.

Because the field is 27 teams instead of 32 because of travel and visa issues with several countries, six teams won their single match on Thursday—Canada’s Chow/Del Bianco, Brazil’s second-seeded  brothers Gustavo and Marcus Carvalhaes, Russia’s fourth-seeded Andrey Bolgov/Artem Kucherenko, Switzerland’s fifth-seeded Mirco Gerson/Gabriel Kissling, Norway’s 12th-seeded Runar Sannarnes/Andreas Takvan and Czech Republic’s 13th-seeded Ondrej Benes/Ondrej Perusic.

Among the men’s teams are 20 men’s players (six teams and eight other players) who played in last year’s FIVB SWATCH Junior World Championships in Halifax, including Canada’s May who with then teammate Sam Schachter won the gold medal in 2010 in Alanya, Turkey and finished fourth last year in Halifax with Dany Demyanenko.

The top returning men’s team from last year championship in Halifax is Poland’s silver medalists Piotr Kantor/Bartosz Losiak, who also won the gold medal at the 2010 FIVB SWATCH Youth World Championship in Porto, Portugal. Seeded third this year, Poland’s Kantor/Losiak won their first match Thursday and then were upset in three sets by USA’s Carico/Kalmbach.

Besides Canada’s May and Poland’s Kantor/Losiak, another top individual in the men’s field is Brazil’s Carvalhaes, who won the bronze medal in Halifax last year with Vitor Felipe.

FROM HALIFAX TO...
The gold medal team in each gender in Halifax will also be rewarded by the FIVB and the organizers with wild cards and free transportation and an automatic main draw berth in a FIVB SWATCH World Tour event in 2012 or 2013. A total of 2,000 tons of special sand was transported to the SEA stadium complex to build the four competition and two practice courts for the venue, which includes the 3,000-seat featured SEA stadium center court.

MORE INFO, PLEASE
A total of 2,000 tons of special sand has been transported to the Salter Sand complex to build the four competition and two practice courts for the venue, which includes the 3,000-seat stadium center court. Single day tickets for the event are on sale through the event website at www.sandjamhalifax.ca. Event information is available at 902.444.3773. Children, five and under, are free for the entire event when accompanied by a ticketed adult.

Countries represented in Halifax at the 12th anniversary of this event are Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Germany, Guatemala, Israel, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Mexico, Norway, Peru, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, United States and Venezuela.

Produced by Canada’s Sports and Entertainment Atlantic (SEA) in association with Volleyball Canada and the Lausanne, Switzerland-based Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB), more information is available at www.fivb.org with live streaming from center court available at www.sandjamhalifax.ca.

HEAVENLY HALIFAX
A founding province of Canada, Nova Scotia is nearly surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, and is known for its high tides, lobster, fish, blueberries and apples. Halifax was the site of the first British town in Canada, founded in 1749. Since then, the area has evolved to be home for charming fishing villages, farming communities and Atlantic Canada's largest city. Halifax, the gateway to Atlantic Canada, has flourished as a prominent port city. Halifax was founded in 1749 by Governor Edward Cornwallis and 2,500 settlers to act as a naval and army base to protect the area, creating Canada’s first permanent British town on the world’s second-largest natural harbor. The peninsula, which Halifax is located on, is 4.5 miles wide and two miles long.


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