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Four out of four for Brazil’s Talita in The Hague

Talita Antunes and Taiana Lima took the gold in an all-Brazilian final at The Hague
The Hague, the Netherlands, June 16, 2013 – In an all-Brazilian final Talita Antunes and Taiana Lima claimed their second gold medal this season. The Shanghai champions defeated Maria Clara and Carolina Salgado in two sets (21-16 21-13) at the Transavia The Hague Grand Slam.

Thirty-year old Talita now won a medal in every World Tour event ever staged in the Netherlands. In the previous four Open editions she won silver (2009), gold (2010) and bronze (2011) with Maria Antonelli. The Grand Slam gold was her 14th career win in 11 seasons.

Targeting Lima

The Brazilian teams know each other very well, Lima even won the Junior World Championships in 2004 with Carol. The Salgado sisters decided to target Lima, who teamed up with Talita only this year. Maria Clara: “We used this tactic in Brazil too and won.” At the beginning it did work, but halfway the first set Lima regained confidence.

“I started serving better, I have been practicing a lot on my serve. That gave me confidence today and improved my overall game”, Lima said. She hit two service aces and turned the score around to win the first set 21-16.

In the second set the audience in the beach stadium in Scheveningen was treated to some more great rallies between the two Brazilian teams, won mostly by Talita and Lima. Their first match point was warded off, but at 20-13 Talita finished the game with a brilliant spike.

Talita: “Taiana was serving so well it was easy for me to finish it with the block. Also I think when Maria Clara and Carol started making mistakes it influenced their mindset and they could not come back into the game.”

Another step up

With the silver medal, their first since the Quebec Open in 2011, Maria Clara and Carol took another step up, considering they have just come back after Carol's pregnancy and won bronze in the last two events. “We really are disappointed right now but tomorrow we will be happy with silver”, Maria Clara said.

FIVB Transavia Grand Slam tournament page

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