Shanghai, China, May 5, 2011 – Brazilian top seeds Juliana Felisberta Silva and Larissa França had their hope of winning three straight titles on the 2011 FIVB Beach Volleyball Swatch World Tour diminished as they suffered a stunning loss to American qualifiers Brooke Hanson and Lauren Fendrick on Thursday afternoon as the women’s Main Draw of the Shanghai Jinshan Open continues in China.
Following an easy first round win over United States’ Brittany Hochevar/Jennifer Fopma, Juliana/Larissa, who had claimed back-to-back titles in the season-opening Brasilia Open and Sanya Open, lost to Hanson/Fendrick 21-14, 23-25 and 20-18 in a marathon match that lasted nearly an hour.
“It’s our first victory against them, I liked it a lot. They are the best team in the world!” Fendrick, who smashed a ball in for the match winner, said after the encounter. “Brooke served the ball very well and we had a lot of opportunities to side out.”
With their fourth consecutive win at the double gender Shanghai Open, Fendrick/Hanson joined seven other unbeaten teams after the first day of the double elimination women’s Main Draw tournament.
Chinese title favorites Xue Chen/Zhang Xi, who collected a silver last week in Sanya, got off to a fine start in Shanghai as they posted a pair of victories over Norway’s 32nd seeds Brittany Hochevar/Jennifer Fopma and 18th seeded Italians Marta Menegatti/Greta Cicolari.
“We played well in the first set, while in the second their serves were really aggressive, fortunately we could adjust to that soon enough,” said Xue after the 21-17, 27-25 victory over Menegatti/Cicolari. “We will have a good rest and hopefully we can play better tomorrow.”
Other teams winning both their matches in the 32-team women’s Main Draw on Thursday were Brazil’s Maria Antonelli/Talita Antunes (3rd seeds) and Maria Clara Salgado/Carolina Salgado (11), German pair Laura Ludwig/Goller (4), Stefanie Schwaiger/Doris Schwaiger (5) of Austria, the Netherlands’ Marleen Van Iersel/Sanne Keizer (7) and home duo Ying Huang/Yuan Yue (9).
The Main Draw tournament of the US$380,000 Shanghai Open will continue on Friday with the men’s and women’s medal matches scheduled for Saturday and Sunday respectively. The gold medal teams will split $30,000, the silver $21,000 and the bronze $15,000.
The Shanghai Open is the second tournament of 12 double-gender events on the 2011 FIVB Beach Volleyball Swatch World Tour, which also includes three single-gender events for women, two single-gender events for men and a special 24-team Olympic test event in London from August 9 to 14.