Gstaad, Switzerland, July 26, 2007 - Led by three teams from Brazil, and two tandems each from Germany, host Switzerland and the United States, the men’s elimination bracket for the 2007 SWATCH-FIVB World Championships powered by 1to1 energy has been set after the completion of pool play here Thursday.
Brazilians will occupy three of the top four spots in the men’s 32-team single-elimination bracket with only Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers interfering with South Americans filling the top three spot as the Americans beat out reigning world champions Marcio Araujo and Fabio Magalhaes for the third spot behind Pedro Cunha/Franco Neto and Emanuel Rego/Ricardo Santos.
Cunha and Franco assumed the top spot in the bracket after not losing a set in winning three pool play matches the past three days, including a 21-18 and 21-13 victory Thursday over Jochem De Gruijter and Gijs Ronnes of the Netherlands.
Emanuel and Ricardo, the reigning Olympic champions, also won three pool matches, but their 21-14, 15-21 and 16-14 victory over Spain’s Pablo Herrera and Raul Mesa dropped the Brazilians into the bottom half of the bracket with Dalhausser and Rogers. Marcio Araujo and Fabio will compete in the top half bracket with Cunha and Franco.
Brazil is seeking its fifth SWATCH-FIVB World Championships title in six tries, as the South American country will have a fourth team in the elimination bracket. Harley Marques and Pedro Salgado advanced after finishing second in their pool after being upset by Germany’s David Klemperer and Erick Koreng 21-19 and 21-19 in the group’s deciding match.
Nine of the top 12-ranked tandems in the 48-team competition earned top seeds in the elimination bracket advanced after winning pools, including Sascha Heyer/Patrick Huescher and the Laciga brothers (Martin and Paul) of Switzerland. Joining Dalhausser and Rogers as American group winners were Mike Lambert and Stein Metzger.
Julius Brink and Christoph Dieckmann joined Klemperer and Koreng as pool winners Thursday. Both German teams entered this week’s US$1-million SWATCH-FIVB World Championships after finishing second and fourth in the last “major” SWATCH-FIVB World Tour stop in Berlin two weeks ago. Mischa Urbatzka and Jonas Reckermann also earned an elimination berth for Germany.
Other teams winning pools were Igor Kolodinsky/Dmitri Barsouk of Russia, Reinder Nummerdor/Richard Schuil of the Netherlands and Andrew Schacht/Josh Slack of Australia. Nummerdor and Schuil, winners of their country’s first-ever SWATCH-FIVB World Tour gold medal earlier this season in Bahrain, finished 3-0 in their pool while the Aussies and Russians were 2-1.
Jan Schnider and Marcel Gscheidle become the third Swiss tandem to gain an elimination bracket berth while the Americans gain two additional spots with the advancement by the teams of Jake Gibb/Sean Rosenthal and Matt Fuerbringer/Sean Scott.
The eighth of 13 double gender events on the 2007 SWATCH-FIVB World Tour calendar, the 2007 SWATCH-FIVB World Championships concludes this weekend with the women’s elimination matches Friday and the “final four” contests Saturday. The men’s semi-finals and medal matches will be played Sunday as the winning teams shared the $60,000 first-place prizes.