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German teams show muscles at first day of Prague Open main draw

Germany's Ilka Semmler (facing) and Katrin Holtwick

Prague, Czech Republic, May 22, 2014 – Germany has dominated the first day of main draw at the hot and sunny courts of the FIVB World Tour Beach Volleyball Prague Open. Three out of the four German teams at the women’s only event are leading their pool after two matches on Thursday.


Shanghai champions Laura Ludwig and Kira Walkenhorst and vice-world champions Karla Borger and Britta Büthe managed to do that with straight wins. Katrin Holtwick and Ilka Semmler lost one set to Swiss team Goricanec/Hüberli, but still ended the day on top of their pool.


Brazilian stars Maria Antonelli and Juliana Felisberta had a slow start against home team Bonnerova/Hermannova, losing the first set on centre court in Stvanice stadium. But the Fuzhou and Puerto Vallarta silver medallists recovered and booked a 2-1 (15-21 21-12 15-10) win after all.


In the afternoon Antonelli and Juliana also defeated Dumbauskaite/Povilaityte from Lithuania (21-11 21-14). “I am happy with our play”, said Antonelli. “I think we can win a medal here and I hope it’s going to be gold.”


Top seeded Czech team Kristyna Kolocova and Marketa Slukova delighted the home crowd with two solid wins over Dutch Van der Hoeven/Smit (21-14 21-19) and Kolosinska/Brzostek from Poland (21-13 21-12).


“We are glad that we started this tournament well”, Slukova said. “Overall we did great in all aspects. And I am excited that a lot of people came to watch us. It propels us forward.”


Italy’s Gioria and Giombini upset Xue/Xia at Prague Open


Italy’s Daniela Gioria and Laura Giombini caused the first upset at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Prague Open on Thursday.

In their second pool match the Italians, ranked 21st, defeated the Fuzhou and Puerto Vallarta bronze medallists Chen Xue and Xinyi Xia in two sets (22-20 21-19). Read more


Dutch debutant Jessica Smit celebrates birthday on Prague Open centre court


Dutch debutant Jessica Smit did not win her first match at the FIVB World Tour Prague Open on Thursday, but it felt like a party anyway. That's because she got to celebrate her 21st birthday on centre court and make her World Tour main draw debut at the same time.

Smit, a former volleyball player with no previous World Tour experience, teamed up with 29-year old Roos van der Hoeven last September. Van der Hoeven, who has been playing on the World Tour since 2008, had just recovered from a knee injury. Read more


Time for change at the FIVB Beach Volleyball Prague Open


The FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour visited Prague four times before, in 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012, but it has always been a men’s only event.

This year Stvanice stadium hosts a women’s tournament for the first time in history. The reason for this change is simple: the most famous Czech pair Kristyna Kolocova and Marketa Slukova deserves it. Read more


The inaugural women’s only FIVB Prague Open continues on Friday at 9.00 with the third and final pool play match. In the afternoon the numbers two and three of each pool compete in the first elimination round.


The pool winners earn a bye and move straight into the second knockout round on Saturday. The semifinals and final are scheduled for Sunday. The Prague Open winners split $11,000, the silver medallists $8,000 and the bronze $6,000.


The Prague Open is the fourth event on the 2014 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour calendar and the third Open of this season. The next stop after Prague is the double gender Anapa Open in Russia (May 27-June 1).

FIVB Prague Open Tournament Page

FIVB Prague Open Main Draw

FIVB Prague Open Pool Standings

FIVB Prague Open Qualification

FIVB World Tour Twitter Account


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