“Experience, technique and solid team play - still viable in the long run” - Pires
Lausanne, Switzerland, July 4, 2013 – The much awaited Beach Volleyball World Championships are currently in progress and former Brazilian legend of the sport, Sandra Pires provides her views on the action so far.
“It has been a fantastic start to the World Championships and even the weather, which has been temperamental at times, has not dampened the tournament’s spirit and atmosphere. And the sporting action just gets better and better with some of the more unexpected pairings challenging the established hierarchy on the sands.
Smedins and Aleksandrs Samoliovs have really come into their own since the
start of the season and they look set to top their pool in the competition. It
could not have been easy for Smedins to play a match against his brother or
Samoliovs to see his former partner on the other side of the net. But they kept
their focus and cohesion, two qualities which have allowed them to blaze ahead
of the competition this season even though they have only playing together
since the beginning of this year.
“Another new pairing that has achieved a remarkably high level of success this year is Brazil’s Taiana de Souza Lima and Talita Antunes da Rocha. They will face some stiff competition in the elimination round of the World Championships from Germany’s Laura Ludwig and Kira Walkenhorst, but having won gold at the Shanghai, Hague and Rome Grand Slams I think they know what they need to do to pull another victory out of the hat. They have superb technique and team play and they know how to keep their calm, motivate each other and work with the other’s strengths when it matters most.
“It is good to see
that the more experienced pairs of the Championship are showing no signs of
backing down in the face of increased competition. If anything, it seems to
have steeled their resolve to continue winning and performing at the highest
“And other members of the old guard like USA’s Phil Dalhausser and Sean Rosenthal are also well placed to make it to the final stages of the competition. I do hope that Pedro Solberg and Bruno Schimdt will be able to add to their already impressive medal count from this season.
“It is difficult to identify a clear leader in these Championships. With so many quality teams on the sands this year our only assurance is that the competition will get more demanding as it does not appear to be stifling the talent of individual players but encouraging them to give their best. All players will be required to use their every reserve if they want to get to the podium. May the best team win.”
Sandra Pires is a three-time Olympian from Brazil. She won gold with Jackie Silva at the 1996 Games in Atlanta – the first year beach volleyball was introduced as a medal sport – bronze with Adriana Samuel in 2000 in Sydney and fifth place in Athens with Ana Paula Connelly. As a commentator for Globo Sport TV, Sandra has covered the London 2012 Games and the 2012 Brazilian national tour.
Other FIVB blog posts:
Sara Goller: Goller backs Chen Xue and Zhang Xi for World Champs
Sinjin Smith: Beach Volleyball undergoing a
changing of the guardNikola Grbic:
“Serbia will play even better in the coming weeks”
Endres: Brazil on track to win World League title – GustavoTom Hoff: “If there’s anyone who can do it, it’s John Speraw”
- HoffAndrea Zorzi:
Teams must 'give their all at every
opportunity’ says Zorzi
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