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Switzerland finds gold in Mexico at Men’s FIVB U17 World Championships

Easy to tell that Switzerland's Florian Breer/YvesHaussener won the gold medal Sunday at the inaugural FIVB U17 Beach Volleyball World Championships in Acapulco, Mexico.

Acapulco, Mexico, July 20, 2014 — Crowning an already amazing adventure thousands of miles from their homeland, Switzerland’s Florian Breer/Yves Haussener to defeat Spain’s Oscar Jimenez/Alejandro Huerta to win the cherished gold medal to conclude the inaugural double-gender FIVB Beach Volleyball U17 World Championships being held in Acapulco, Mexico.

With an overflow crowd cheering every point the entire day at the Playa Tamarindos event site, earning the final spot on the Acapulco podium prior to the gold medal matches was France’s Marc Darrieux/Timothee Platre who defeated Canada’s Jordan Pereira/Taryq Sani

Starting with a men’s field of 25 teams representing each of the five FIVB Confederations four were still standing to play in Sunday’s semifinals, bronze medal and gold medal matches. With three countries in the final four from the European Confederation (CEV) (France, Spain, Switzerland), Canada is from the North and Central America Confederation (NORCECA).


In the men’s gold medal finale between unbeaten teams both with 7-0 records, Switzerland’s Breer, 15/Haussener, 16, both of Basel continued to remain focused, taking one point at a time to finally overcome Spain’s Jimenez/Huerta, both 16 and both living in Tenerife in three glorious beach volleyball sets, 22-20, 20-22 and 15-11 in 56 minutes. Switzerland’s Breer was selected the men’s Most Outstanding Player of the tournament.

Switzerland’s gold medalists Breer/Haussener duo were unblemished in the tournament, going 8-0 with elimination round wins over teams from Russian, Italy and Canada before their tournament-ending victory over Spain.

Spain’s silver medalists Jimenez/Huerta duo was unbeaten in pool play at 4-0 with elimination round wins over teams from the USA, Netherlands and France before losing in the final to leave Acapulco with a 7-1 record in addition to their medals.

As challenging as the tournament was for these young athletes, the climatic gold medal match was the pinnacle of friendly competition as the two teams that train together frequently and are friends off of the court were relentless on the court Sunday. The final edge might have been that Switzerland’s Breer/Haussener have been playing as a team for nearly three years.

Playing the first two sets like they knew each other, which of course they do as they have not only trained together but played before in competition with Spain winning the last meeting in pool play at the European qualification tournament for this event, they split the first two sets with both going to overtime.

Switzerland’s Breer/Haussener played with poise and patience, doggedly dodging situations that could have turned the third and deciding set around. The third set was tied eight times up to 10-10 when scored three straight points and after another of Spain’s Huerta’s numerous kills, Switzerland score the final two points on a Haussener kill off of Jimenez and the match ended dramatically with Breer’s block of a Huerta kill attempt.


Switzerland’s gold-medal winning Breer remarked between sighs of relief and outbursts of joy, “Unbelievable, absolutely unbelievable. We take our sport very serious and to receive a reward like this is so amazing I almost can’t put it into words.  We finished second in the European qualifying tournament for this event, but we were still sure of ourselves and that we could play well and do a good job. For Switzerland and our coach this gold medal is a big thank you.”

With his sentiments between huge gulps of water, Switzerland’s other gold medal winner Haussener reflected, “This was a tough, tough match. The Spanish guys would never quit, but we didn’t think they would.  We stayed calm as possible and we were able to take advantage when we could and it was just enough to win this wonderful championship.  I hope we have many more in the future, and we are really happy to be able to have a wild card in one FIVB World Tour event.


In the men’s bronze medal match for the final spot on the podium, what turned out to be closer than expected because of their semifinal losses, France’s Marc Darrieux/Timothee Platre fell behind in both sets and came back to defeat Canada’s Sharone Vernon Evans/Parvir Jhajj, 26-24, 21-19 in 42 minutes.

In the first set of the bronze medal match, France’s Darrieux/Platre clawed their way back in after being down to Canada’s Evans/Jhajj 6-1 at the start of the set. After that, Canada still led 12-9 at the technical time out, before France rallied to squeek by in the first set, 26-24 by scoring the final two points.

In the second set, Canada kept fighting, ahead 11-10 at the technical time out and scored the next two points for a 13-10 lead before France battled back again to take the lead and eventually win the set and the match to secure the special medal from the first-time event.

France’s Darrieux/Platre duo won the bronze medal match and leave with a 6-2 record, having eliminated teams from Costa Rica and the United States in the elimination rounds before the semifinal loss to Spain who gave them their only other loss in Acapulco. 

Canada’s Evans/Jhajj tandem finished in fourth place a 5-2 record, unbeaten in pool play followed by elimination round victories over teams from Mexico and Poland before their semifinal loss to Switzerland and bronze medal setback to France.

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