London 2012

Press release

Latvian duo stay calm to start Olympics with a win


Aleksandrs Samoilovs (pictured) and Ruslans Sorokins began London 2012 with a win

London, Great Britain, July 28, 2012 - Latvia’s Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Ruslans Sorokins needed to hold their nerve to get their campaign at the London 2012 Olympic Games off to a winning start against Poland’s Mariusz Prudel and Grzegorz Fijalek. 

After they had fought back from a loss in the first set, they recovered in the second and then took an early lead in the third to finish winners with a 12-21, 21-15, 15 – 12 victory. It took the Latvian duo a little time to secure the win though as the Polish pair saved three match-points.

“We said not to play with too much emotion, to calm down and just focus on technique,” Samoilovs said. “We had to focus on receiving the serve and correct technique. We didn’t want to go with our emotions and chase after the point, we just needed to concentrate.”

Samoilovs and Sorokins began slowly at Horse Guard’s Parade as Prudel and Fijalek showed the form that allowed them to win bronze at the smart Grand Slam, Berlin two weeks ago. They dominated their East-European neighbours from the start of the set and appeared poised to race away with a win before the Latvians fought back.

London 2012 is both teams’ first Olympic Games andwhile Samoilovs competed at Beijing 2008, he put their early mistakes down to opening match nerves.

“There was a lot of emotion,” he said, “but when you want to play and want to play well sometimes it gets too much. I had to hours waiting for the match and was pacing around like a lion in a cage. In the first set we weren’t good enough.”

Both teams are highly familiar with one another after a number of years playing against each other and travelling together on the FIVB SWATCH World Tour. Even so despite the amicability between the two sides, their friendship was put to one side once they stepped on court.

“When we are on the world tour we are one big family when we eat together and live together in the same hotel,” Samoilovs said. “Off the court we are friends, but on the court there is only one winner.”

Download highresolution

| More

More press releases

   
27.12.2012 14:44:20
Olympic Beach Volleyball review – What to expect in Rio?
Lausanne, Switzerland, December 27, 2012 - As part of an end-of-year review series, the FIVB takes a look back at the success of beach volleyball at t... More...
26.12.2012 09:41:42
Olympic Volleyball review - Stunning finals highlight terrific tournament
Lausanne, Switzerland, December 26, 2012 - As part of an end-of-year review series, the FIVB takes a look back at the outstanding volleyball competiti... More...
20.12.2012 17:11:37
Beach volleyball voted one of the highlights of London 2012
Lausanne, Switzerland, December 20, 2012 – Beach volleyball has been named as one of the highlights of the 2012 London Olympic Games by Olympic.org.... More...
12.09.2012 18:24:41
Brink and Reckermann handling celebrity well
Lausanne, Switzerland, September 12, 2012 – With Europe’s first beach volleyball gold around their necks, Brink and Reckermann have become genuine sta... More...
28.08.2012 16:58:48
Walsh reflects on May-Treanor retirement, while her career moves ahead
Lausanne, Switzerland, August 28, 2012 – As three-time Olympic champion Kerri Walsh appears to have wrapped up her 2012 season, the FIVB looks back on... More...
24.08.2012 17:25:22
May-Treanor's retirement brings an end to the sport's greatest pairing
London, Great Britain, August 24, 2012 – Three weeks after the end of the London Olympics, the FIVB reflects on the amazing team of Misty May-Treanor ... More...
22.08.2012 09:57:22
Russia sets the bar high, but expect big changes from Brazil and USA, says Tom Hoff
Lausanne, Switzerland, August 22, 2012 - In a final retrospective on the London Olympics, former USA captain Tom Hoff talks about the Russian players ... More...
21.08.2012 14:57:51
Olympic beach volleyball sand distributed
London, Great Britain, August 20, 2012 - Over 4,000 tons of sand has been donated by The London 2012 Organising Committee (LOCOG) from the temporary b... More...
12.08.2012 18:31:48
Russia come from behind to win Olympic title after 32 years, Brazil and Italy get silver and bronze
London, Great Britain, August 12, 2012 – The last day of action of the men’s volleyball tournament at Earls Court provided all fans with the right cli... More...
12.08.2012 18:30:00
Brazilian legend Giba calls time on career
London, Great Britain, August 12, 2012 – Brazil captain and legend Giba has called time on his 20-year international career after the heart-breaking 3... More...