FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour

Gstaad MAJOR | 7 - 12 July 2015


Press release

World Championship Hangover?

In a match featuring world championship semi-finalists, Nick Lucena (left) of the United States bumps the Mikasa at Dutchmen Reinder Nummerdor (center) and Christiaan Varenhorst follow the action.

Gstaad, Switzerland, July 9, 2015 - Will there be an emotional or physical “hangover” this week in the US$800,000 Gstaad Major for the teams that medaled at last week’s FIVB “senior” Beach Volleyball World Championships in The Netherlands?

The early indication here Thursday was no for two finalists at the finalists at the world championships as the gold medal winners Alison Cerutti/Bruno Oscar Schmidt of Brazil and Reinder Nummerdor/Christian Varenhorst of The Netherlands each won two pool play matches in the third of three SWATCH Major Series events to be played this season on the FIVB World Tour calendar.

However, world championship bronze winners Evandro Goncalves and Pedro Solberg of Brazil stumbled in their second Pool B match Thursday to a team from Canada after opening with a victory over a pair from host Switzerland.  Both matches were three-setters as 18th-seeded Jason Binstock and Sam Schachter of Canada posted a 2-1 (22-24, 26-24, 15-11) victory over the second-seeded Brazilians in Thursday’s longest match (60 minutes).

The third-seeded Alison and Bruno posted opening two-set wins Thursday over pairs from Norway and Poland to gain control of Pool C to extend their FIVB World Tour winning streak to 10-straight matches.  The Brazilian world championships conclude group play Friday against 14th-seeded Grzegorz Fijalek and Mariusz Prudel of Poland.

The top-seeded Nummerdor and Varenhorst were “tested” in their first Pool A match Thursday by posting a 2-1 (21-19, 19-21, 15-8) win 47 minutes over 32nd-seeded Nico Beeler and Alexei Strasser of Switzerland.  The Dutch closed out play Thursday with a 2-0 (2-18, 21-19) win in 31 minutes over 17th-seeded Theo Brunner and Nick Lucena of the United States.

Fourth-place finishers at the world championships after losing their final two matches to Brazilian pairs, Brunner and Lucena opened play Thursday by defeating 16th-seeded Ben Saxton and Chaim Schalk of Canada 2-0 (21-19, 22-20) in 33 minutes.  Despite their lofty finish in the world championships, the Americans had to win two qualifying matches Wednesday to earn a spot in the Gstaad Major Main Draw.

In one of Thursday’s more interesting groups featuring two pairs from the United States that placed fifth in the world championships along with tandems from Italy and Russia, Americans Jake Gibb and Casey Patterson clinched Pool D with wins over compatriots Tri Bourne/John Hyden (2-1, 22-20, 18-21, 15-12, 53 minutes) and Italians Adrian Carambula/Alex Ranghieri (2-0, 21-15, 21-13m 35 minutes).

Other group leaders entering play Friday are fifth-seeded Aleksandrs Samoilovs/Janis Smedins of Latvia (Pool E), sixth-seeded Emanuel Rego/Ricardo Santos of Brazil and 11th-seeded Pablo Herrera/Adrian Gavira of Spain (Pool F), seventh-seeded Alexander Brouwer/Robert Meeuwsen of The Netherlands and 10th-seeded Jonathan Erdmann/Kay Matysik of Germany (Pool G), and ninth-seeded Clemens Doppler/Alexander Horst of Austria (Pool H).  All have 2-0 pool play marks.

Returning to the Swiss Alps village for the 16th-straight year, the Gstaad Major is the third of three SWATCH Major Series events that began with tournaments last month in Croatia (Porec) and Norway (Stavanger).  The men’s 32-team Main Draw concludes pool play Friday followed by three rounds of elimination matches Saturday.  The semi-final and medal matches will be played Sunday where the winning team shares the $57,000 first-place prize.

Following the Gstaad Major, the FIVB World Tour takes a week off before resuming in the inaugural Yokohama Grand Slam July 21-26.  It will mark the first-time that both men and women have competed together in Japan in a FIVB World Tour event.  Seven FIVB men’s only events were held in Japan from 1989-1995, including a 1991 on stop in Yokohama.  A total of 14 women’s only events were held in Osaka from 1994-2005 and in 2008 and 2009.

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