London 2012

Press release

Latvian duo fight back to reach last four

Martins Plavins celebrated reaching the London 2012 semifinals after he and Janis Smedins beat Jacob Gibb and Sean Rosenthal

London, Great Britain, August 6, 2012 – Latvian duo Martins Plavins and Janis Smedins found their best form to knock Jacob Gibb and Sean Rosenthal out of the London 2012 Olympic Games with a 19-21, 21-18, 15-11 victory.

It means they will now play FIVB world champions Emanuel Rego and Alison Cerutti for a place in the final at Horse Guard’s Parade on Thursday.

“It’s unbelievable,” Plavins said. I have no words to say. Every win at the Olympic Games is a huge victory for all of Latvia. Now we have five. It’s huge. We don’t want to finish fourth so we will keep on fighting.”

Gibb and Rosenthal were in control for the majority of the first set, but they displayed uncharacteristic nerves which allowed the Latvians to stay in contention. Plavins and Smedins saved two set points, but on the third Plavins over hit a shot that dropped out and gave the Americans the opening set.

Throughout the second set both teams matched each other point for point. Gibb and Rosenthal showed glimpses of the form that allowed them to win two grand slam gold medals on the FIVB SWATCH World Tour this year, while Plavins and Smedins demonstrated why they reached the semifinals at the 2011 FIVB World Championships. At 19-19, a Plavins’ spike gave the Latvians set point and he repeated the move to draw them level.

They kept up their form in the third set and didn’t allow Gibb and Rosenthal the chance to settle into their rhythm. The Americans saved one match point at 15-10, but Plavins and Smedins took their second to reach the last four.

“To play these guys and beat them on centre court in front of 15,000 people is amazing,” Plavins added. “We have to play like that again and not be scared and be confident.”

For Gibb and Rosenthal their quarterfinal exit matches their result from Beijing 2008, but they were disappointed with how they had gone out.

“I didn’t see their defence and usually I’m better at picking up on it,” Gibb said. “We nearly came back and we had a few opportunities. I thought we would come back the whole way through, but I’m not sure what went wrong.”

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 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...