Talita and Taiana good enough to become world champions - Pottharst
Stare Jablonki, Poland, June 30, 2013 - Olympic champion Kerri Pottharst picks a Brazil-USA double for the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships Mazury 2013 which start in Stare Jablonki on Monday. Here she gives her thoughts on who the contenders are.
Kerri Pottharst says Taiana adds a bit of spice to her partnership with Talita|
"It's exciting to see the beginning of another four years in the lead up to Rio 2016. There are so many new combinations of players, as well as a return of some successful, experience combinations. And, with the announcement that Kerri Walsh will be returning by the end of the season, after having her third baby (incredible!!) it should shake things up a bit.
"Seeing the results of the events played so far makes me think that the door is wide open for any team to step up and regularly see themselves in the top 10 or even the top four. This is definitely the time to do it, as so many teams are finding their rhythm in their new partnerships. The competition seems to be quite equal in both women's and men's.
"One of the big surprises this year has been the Aussie men’s team Kapa and McHugh. After dominating the Renault National Beach Volleyball tour in Australia this past summer, I think they have not only surprised me, but surprised a lot of other men's teams on the World Tour. They are now finally getting some excellent match experience against the top teams in the world. This is something that Australians have always struggled with as our depth of competition at home is not as strong as the US or Brazil. With this experience I expect to see them hit a top four finish by the end of this year.
"However favourites for Stare Jablonki have to be the Americans and Brazilians. I would have had my eye on Kessy and Ross to start finding their form again, but now with Kessy's injury that's all on stand by. It will be interesting to see how Ross plays with Pavlik in the World Champs. I would expect them to be fighting for a position in the top four and if they get there, then a medal is likely. It will all come down to how Pavlik handles the pressure of a World Champs with such an experienced partner. Ross's job will be more difficult as she will have to try to support her partner and keep her focused, while concentrating on her own game at the same time.
"Talita and Taiana seem to have drawn a winning combination, for the Brazilians. Talita is so focused and calm and Taiana seems to have easy adapted to her new partner and adds a bit of spice to her team! These two have a lot of room to grow. It's also great to see another mum, Carol Salgado, back on tour after having her first baby. These two will also continue to improve as now they have new priorities and play with a different energy.
"And finally, the Chinese pairing Zhang/Xue are back after a couple of events off. This season will be one of regrouping for this pair as they struggle to forget their disappointment at the London Games. I believe that as long as they stay together and look ahead, then they will most definitely be taking home more medals as the season progresses.
"On the men's side, quite obviously its Dalhausser and Rosenthal. What an incredibly talented new combination. Both arguably the best in their respective roles. If these two have strong leadership, healthy bodies and stay focused over the next 3 years, they will no doubt be unchallenged for gold in Rio.
My picks for the World Champs:
- Australians get second win in Group 1, Finns and Argentines grab 3-1 wins in Group 2
- Egypt win World League Group 3 Finals to advance in Group 2 next year
- Brazilian World Champions Show Improvement
- FIVB President applauds the Netherlands as beach volleyball embarks on new era
- Silver medal finish boasts Fernanda & Lima’s FIVB World Tour rankings
- FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix, Day 5: Brazil, China, USA all two-from-two in Group 1 to start 2015 tournament
- FIVB Volleyball World League Day 25 - USA secure top spot in Pool B, France finish Pool play with a perfect 12 wins
- Montenegro and Egypt to play for the gold in Group 3 Finals
- FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships Day Nine - As It Happened
- USA’s Brunner/Lucena Trying to Capture Magic from Season’s Past
- World Grand Prix in full swing with start of Groups 1 and 2
- World League highlights three superb five-setters on Day 24
- FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships 2015 Day Eight - As It Happened
- Brazilian Semifinal Victories Net Olympic Berth
- 50/50 chances for semifinal Holtwick/Semmler versus Lima/Fernanda
- Heartbreak for brave Bawden and Clancy at World Championships
- Australia competing to stay among volleyball's best
- World League Group 3 finalists have their say
- Smejkal: "Second place in pool D is our goal"
- Turkey hosts USA, Belgium, Italy in World Grand Prix
- Vercesi: "Securing a spot at the Finals remains our main objective"
- Getting Social: FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships 2015 Day 7
- FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships 2015 Day Seven - As It Happened
- Brazil captures both quarterfinals Thursday in amazing Apeldoorn
- Day 23 sees Brazil and France extend their lead after both record straight sets victories
- Lucena and Brunner lead semifinals charges as Amsterdam closes for business
- Peru, Colombia, Cuba and Kazakhstan prepare for Pool P encounters in Trujillo
- U20 Drawing of Lots ceremony held in Puerto Rico
- Antiga: "We are now playing for a ticket to the Finals in Rio"
- Alluring Apeldoorn anxiously awaits awesome aria of Quarterfinals tonight
- Australia take on Serbia and Turkey play USA, live on YouTube
- Juliana and Maria Antonelli win Brazilian battle to advance
- Poland and USA prepare for Pool B climax
- Sanderson ready for emotional homecoming
- Qataris move on to quarter-finals
- World Grand Prix Pool A coaches expect challenging weekend
- Americans, Dutch, Germans & Russian Post Elimination Wins
- FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships Day Six - As It Happened
- Getting Social: FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships 2015 Day 6
- Awesome Apeldoorn angst approaching Thursday’s Round of 16, quarterfinals
- Qataris upset the form book to advance in Amsterdam
- FIVB President congratulates Amsterdam on spectacular event
- World champs live stream opens
- Predictable Women Winners Wednesday
- Amiable Apeldoorn absolutely awesome area for elimination rounds
- Paraguay's Michelle/Filippo incredible experience in Apeldoorn
- Juliana and Larissa set up Amsterdam showdown
- World Grand Prix Week 2 preview: All 28 teams play in thrilling matches around the world
- World League Week 8 preview: Group 3 finalists in the spotlight
- Three Dutch men’s teams advance to elimination rounds