All eyes on Transavia Grand Slam as Tour get ready for World Champs warm-up
Gstaad, Switzerland, July 13, 2014 – With the Gstaad Grand Slam wrapped up for another successful year the attention of the beach volleyball world will now turn to the Netherlands when the FIVB World Tour heads to the Transavia Grand Slam, which runs from July 15-20.
The tournament will be spread out over three sites – in The Hague, Apledoorn and Amsterdam – and the leading teams will be using it to hone their preparations for the 2015 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships, which will be held across The Netherlands.
For men’s silver and bronze medallists Alison Cerutti and Bruno Schmidt and Nick Lucena and Ryan Doherty their progress to the Gstaad podium comes with the added bonus of neither having to play in the qualifying rounds as they did in the Swiss Alps.
“It will be the first one when we’re not in the qualifiers and that is all we are looking forward to,” Lucena said. “It is a new tournament and one we are looking forward to.”
First Grand Slam gold as Semmler and Holtwick win all-German affair
Ilka Semmler and Katrin Holtwick claimed their first ever Grand Slam gold medals when they defeated fellow Germans Karla Borger and Britta Buthe in the Gstaad Grand Slam gold medal match on Sunday.
It was the first time that two German teams had met in an FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour final and Semmler and Holtwick enjoyed the best of a tightly-fought match to win 2-0 (24-22, 21-16).
The week started badly as they won only one of their pool play matches and narrowly squeezed through to the elimination rounds, an echo of their recent slump when they were eliminated from the Berlin and Moscow Grand Slams at the pool stage.
“I can’t sum up how it feels because there are so many emotions,” Semmler said.
“I’m excited, I could cry and I could scream. I never imagined we would win this tournament here.”
Dalhausser and Rosenthal make it back-to-back gold with Gstaad success
Phil Dalhausser and Sean Rosenthal won a second consecutive World Tour gold medal when they defeated Alison Cerutti and Bruno Schmidt in the Gstaad Gold medal match on Sunday.
The American pair won the previous tournament, the Stavanger Grand Slam and they continued their strong form in the Swiss Alps when they defeated the Brazilians 2-0 (21-17, 21-17) after a match that pitted Dalhausser against Alison at the net and Rosenthal and Bruno at the back of the court.
“We keep getting better and better,” Rosenthal said. “When Phil can serve and block like that and I’m picking up tough balls at the back we’re going to be a pretty tough team to beat.
“I need to be a bit steadier on my passing there when it gets towards the end, but all in all it has been a great week for us and we’re stoked to come out with the win our second gold in a row.”
The double-gender US$800,000 FIVB Gstaad Grand Slam ran from Wednesday, July 9 until Sunday July 13 when the men’s and women’s medal matches took place. It was the ninth event and the fifth Grand Slam on the 2014 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour calendar that features nine Grand Slams and 11 Open tournaments.
The 2014 World Tour began at the Fuzhou Open in China in April and concludes at the Durban Open in South Africa in December. Next up on the World Tour calendar is the Transavia Hague Grand Slam which runs from July 15-20.