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Second half of FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour starting in Switzerland

One of the all-time popular tour stops, Gstaad will host the world’s best beach volleyball tandems for the 12th consecutive year.

Lausanne, Switzerland, July 8, 2013 – After crowning new champions from China and The Netherlands at the ninth annual $1million FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships, Mazury 2013 this past week in Stare Jablonki, Poland the second half of the 2013 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour starts this week in Switzerland at the $440,000 FIVB Gstaad Grand Slam. One of the all-time popular tour stops, Gstaad will host the world’s best beach volleyball tandems for the 12th consecutive year.

Following the stop in Switzerland, the FIVB World Tour returns to the United States for the first time in 10 years when it visits Southern California for the $440,000 FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam, July 22-27 for another double-gender event.

A pair of new teams, both with veterans, Brazil continues to lead both the men and women’s FIVB Beach Volleyball standings. Riding atop the men’s season point standings is Brazil’s new team of Pedro Salgado/Bruno Oscar Schmidt while leading the women’s action is another new Brazilian team, Talita Antunes/Taiana Lima.

While Brazil is at the top of the FIVB World Tour midway through the 2013 season, the new FIVB Beach Volleyball World Champions are Netherlands’ Alexander Brouwer/Robert Meeuwsen and China’s Chen Xue/Xi Zhang. Netherlands’ Brouwer/Meeuwsen defeated Brazil’s Alvaro Filho/Ricardo Santos in straight sets for the gold medal. It was the first FIVB victory for either player and improved the previous best FIVB World Championship finish for Netherlands of ninth place in 2007. On the women’s side, four different Confederations were featured in the final four with China’s Xue/Zhang claiming their second FIVB victory of the season with a three-set win over surprising Karla Borger/Britta Buthe of Germany. It was Xue/Zhang’s 14th FIVB World Tour career victory, all together as partners. China became the first country other than Brazil or the United States to win a women’s FIVB World Championship gold medal.

After an exciting mid-season break from the FIVB World Tour in Poland, midway through the men’s FIVB international season, Brazil’s Salgado/Schmidt have collected 3,620 points and lead Latvia’s second-place Janis Smedins/Aleksandrs Samoilovs by 280 points and Brazil’s third place Ricardo Santos/Alvaro Filho by 370 points. In the season earnings race, Brazil’s Salgado/Schmidt lead with $105,775, followed by Latvia’s Smedins/Samoilovs with $94,700 and Brazil’s Ricardo/Filho with $91,500. All three of the top teams are playing in their first full season together.

In 2013 FIVB women’s international competition, Brazil’s Antunes/Lima duo continues to lead at the midway point in the season with 3,450 points and $113,500 in earnings. Second in both categories is China’s veteran duo of Xue/Zhang with 3,020 points and $81,000 while third in points is Madelein Meppelink/Sophie van Gestel of the Netherlands with 2,990 points and third among the money leaders is Germany’s rapidly improving Borger/Buthe with $78,300.

Statistically in FIVB men’s international competition, Brazil’s Salgado/Schmidt duo has a 30-10 match record so far for a 75.0% winning percentage, third highest. Based on winning percentage to date, USA’s Phil Dalhausser/Sean Rosenthal team remains first at 85.2% (23-4), followed by Latvia’s Smedins/Samoilovs at 80.0% (28-7), Brazil’s Salgado/Schmidt, Poland’s Grzegorz Fijalek/Mariusz Prudel at 75.0% (24-8), USA’s Jake Gibb/Casey Patterson tandem at 71.9% (23-9), Italy’s Paolo Nicolai/Daniele Lupo at 71.9% (23-9) and the Netherlands’ Brouwer/Meeuwsen at 71.0% (22-9).

Half way through this year’s FIVB women’s international play, Brazil’s Antunes/Lima duo has the second highest winning percentage at 82.19% (29-6) as China’s Xue/Zhang have only played three times so far and have a 90.0% (18-2) to lead. Third is USA’s Jennifer Kessy/April Ross at 77.8% (21-6), followed by Brazil’s Liliane Maestrini/Barbara Seixas at 75.0% (27-9), Netherlands’ Meppelink/van Gestel at 75.0% (27-9) and Brazilian sisters Maria Clara Salgado/Carolina Salgado at 74.3% (22-8) to complete the top six.

Two women’s teams tied for seventh and all also considered contenders for podium finishes at 71.9% (23-9 each) are Germany’s Katrin Holtwick/Ilka Semmler and Brazil’s Maria Antonelli/Agatha Bednarczuk.

On the FIVB men’s international season scorecard, USA’s Dalhausser/Rosenthal (Fuzhou, Rome) has won two gold medals while USA’s Gibb/Patterson (Shanghai), Latvia’s Smedins/Samoilovs (Corrientes), Brazil’s Salgado/Schmidt (The Hague) and Netherlands’ Brouwer/Meeuwsen (Stare Jablonki) each have one gold medal so far this season.

On the FIVB women’s international season scorecard, Brazil’s Antunes/Lima (Shanghai, The Hague and Rome) have three gold medals while China’s Xue/Zhang has now won two gold medals this year (Fuzhou and Stare Jablonki) and Netherlands’ van Gestel/Meppelink (Corrientes) has one gold medal at the midpoint of the season.

The 2013 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour is comprised of 10 Grand Slam events and the 2013 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships. Not part of the World Tour but still counting towards the FIVB World Rankings, the FIVB yearly calendar also includes seven Open events throughout the world to help open the door for development of the sport.

The 2013 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour will end in Brazil with the $440,000 FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam to be held October 9-13.

Click here for more information on the World Tour

Click here for more information on the Gstaad Grand Slam

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