Talking Stats: 2014 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour—Aug. 24
The 2014 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour is now going on a four-week break preparing for the 10th and final regular 2014 grand slam at the $800,000 FIVB São Paulo Grand Slam in Brazil to be held Sept. 23-28.
This past week, the FIVB World Tour was back in Poland for the double-gender $800,000 FIVB Stare Jablonki Grand Slam in the Mazury region of Poland. The women’s final was on Saturday and the men’s on Sunday.
With 12 men’s events and 13 women’s tournaments now completed in 2014, quickly microwaved is another pot of delectable 2014 FIVB World Tour plate full of stats from last week’s FIVB Stare Jablonki Grand Slam in Poland.
• Brazilian Women Continue Gold Medal Dominance Over Germany – Brazil defeated Germany once again in a gold medal match, at the FIVB Stare Jablonki Grand Slam, as Larissa Franca/Talita Antunes defeated Laura Ludwig/Julia Sude 21-14, 19-21 and 16-14 in 53 minutes. In 13 FIVB World Tour women’s finals, Brazil now has defeated Germany 12 times. Only Stephanie Pohl/Okka Rau who defeated Maria Antonelli/Vanilda Leao 21-17, 20-22, 15-9 in 63 minutes at the 2008 FIVB Marseille Open have been able to win a gold medal match over Brazil. Ludwig has been a victim of the Brazilian dominance four times previously, losing with Sara Goller to Juliana Felisberta/Larissa at the FIVB Espinho Open in 2007, the FIVB Brasilia Open and FIVB Gstaad Grand Slam, both in 2010 and losing with Kira Walkenhorst to the Salgado sisters in the FIVB Moscow Grand Slam in 2013.
• Germany has Two Women on the Podium Again – Germany has had two women make the semifinals of an FIVB World Tour event seven times following Laura Ludwig/Julia Sude and Katrin Holtwick/Ilka Semmler winning the silver and bronze medals at the FIVB Stare Jablonki Grand Slam. The first four times in Marseille 2008, Moscow 2009, Xiamen 2013, and Durban 2013, only one finished on the podium. However this is the third time in 2014 that Germany has won two medals at an FIVB World Tour event with Holtwick/Semmler and Ludwig/Kira Walkenhorst winning silver and bronze at the FIVB Prague Open in May and Holtwick/Semmler and Karla Borger/Britta Buthe winning the gold and silver at the FIVB Gstaad Grand Slam in July.
• Canada’s Bansley and Pavan finish fifth Again – Canada’s Heather Bansley/Sarah Pavan must wonder when they’ll finally break through and make a semifinal at an FIVB World Tour event. This is the third time this season and the fourth overall that the Canadian duo has come just one step away from making the final four. In Stare Jablonki they lost to eventual silver medalists, Laura Ludwig/Julia Sude of Germany, 15-10 in the third set, in Gstaad they lost to eventual bronze medalists, Kristyna Kolocova/Marketa Slukova of the Czech Republic, 15-9 in the third, and in Prague, they were beaten soundly by Ludwig/Kira Walkenhorst in two sets. Last season they just missed in the FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam, losing to eventual gold medalists and 2013 World Tour Points Champions, Taiana Lima/Talita Antunes of Brazil, 15-11 in the third. Canada has only had one women’s team finish in the top four of an FIVB World Tour event. Guylaine Dumont/Annie Martin finished 4th at the FIVB Stavanger Open in July of 2004.
• German Women Qualify Two Teams – Germany joined Russia and Canada as the only three nations to qualify two women’s teams for an FIVB World event in 2014 when Chantal Laboureur/Anni Schumacher and Victoria Bieneck/Julia Grossner made the main draw through the qualifier at the FIVB Stare Jablonki Grand Slam. Russia has achieved the feat three times this season at the FIVB Grand Slams in Berlin, Stavanger, and Klagenfurt where Canada also qualified two teams. Russia and Canada had three teams in the qualifying tournament when they accomplished their feats, but Germany was a perfect two for two in Stare Jablonki.
• Brazil Sweeps Again – Brazil swept the men’s and women’s gold medals for the second consecutive FIVB World Tour event with Larissa Franca/Talita Antunes winning both women’s events and Alison Cerutti/Bruno Oscar Schmidt winning in Klagenfurt and Alvaro Filho/Pedro Salgado winning in Stare Jablonki for the men. It is the 40th time that Brazil has won both men’s and women’s gold medals at an FIVB World Tour event. Twice before Brazil had two consecutive sweeps, once the South American nation had three consecutive, and once five consecutive in Stavanger, Marseille, Montreal, St. Petersburg, and Paris in June-July of 2006.
• First Time’s a Charm – Brazil’s Pedro Salgado/Alvaro Filho won the gold medal at the FIVB Stare Jablonki Grand Slam in their first event together. Alvaro had played with Ricardo Santos since the beginning of the 2013 season and Pedro Salgado had played all of 2014 with Emanuel Rego. Salgado/Filho is the 13th team to win an FIVB World Tour event in their first tournament together. The last team to win in their inaugural event was USA’s Olympians Phil Dalhausser/Sean Rosenthal at the 2013 season-opening FIVB Fuzhou Open. Salgado also won with Harley Marques in their first tournament together at the Shanghai Open in May of 2007. They were the last team to win in their first partnership before Dalhausser/Rosenthal in 2013.
• Another Men’s Qualifier Medal – Jake Gibb/Casey Patterson of the United States became the eighth men’s team in 2014 to win a medal on the FIVB World Tour by winning the bronze at the Stare Jablonki Grand Slam. In a year where men’s and women’s qualifier teams have already set the record for medals, Gibb/Patterson is an unlikely winner because Jake Gibb has not been in the qualifier tournament since the Stare Jablonki event in 2010 with Sean Rosenthal and Casey Patterson hasn’t been in a qualifier since the Stare Jablonki event in 2011 with Brad Keenan. Gibb/Rosenthal finished fifth in 2010 and Patterson/Keenan finished 41st in 2011.
• Austria has its Best Finish in a Year – Austria’s Clemens Doppler/Alexander Horst may not have won a medal after making the semifinals at the FIVB Stare Jablonki Grand Slam, but their fourth place finish was the best for the tiny European nation in exactly one year. Last year at the FIVB Moscow Grand Slam, ending 52 weeks ago, Horst and Lorenz Petutschnig also finished fourth after losing their semifinals and bronze medal matches. Austria was hoping to capture the magic of Stare Jablonki in 2012 when Doppler/Horst had their country’s best men’s finish ever in an FIVB World Tour event with a silver medal.
• Reinder Nummerdor has His Best Finish since London – In the two years following his fourth-place finish with Richard Schuil at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, Reinder Nummerdor has struggled to find top five finishes. Last year, he and Schuil finished in ninth-place two times, 17th-place two times and had one 25th-place finish. Leading up to the FIVB Stare Jablonki Grand Slam, Nummerdor has struggled in 2014 with new partner Steven van de Velde, finishing in 25th-place two times, and failing to qualify at the FIVB Gstaad Grand Slam. Invigorated with a new partner, Christiaan Varenhorst, who started 2014 with a bronze medal with Jon Stiekema at the season-opening FIVB Fuzhou Open, the Dutch duo finished fifth in Stare Jablonki, winning their pool before falling to Austria’s Clemens Doppler/Alexander Horst 21-18 and 21-18 in the third round of the 24-team knockout round.
As part of the initiatives of FIVB President Dr Ary S. Graça F° and his leadership team, the 2014 FIVB Beach Volleyball international calendar also included a record four age-group FIVB World Championships and the 2014 Nanjing (China) Youth Olympic Games Aug. 17-27).
Poland’s Maciej Kosiak/Maciej Rudol won the men’s gold medal for the home country and Australia’s Mariafe Artacho/Nicole Laird capturing the women’s gold medal for the second annual FIVB U23 World Championships in Myslowice, Poland. Capturing the gold medals in the inaugural FIVB U17 World Championships in Acapulco, Mexico were Switzerland’s Florian Breer/Yves Haussener and USA’s Morgan Martin/Kathryn Plummer. Winning the 14th FIVB U21 World Championships in Larnaka, Cyprus were Poland’s Michal Bryl/Kacper Kujawiak and Canada’s Sophie Bukovec/Tiadora Miric. The 13th FIVB U19 World Championships in Porto Portugal were won by Brazil’s Arthur Mariano/George Wanderley for the men and in the women’s competition the winners were Brazil’s Andressa Cavalanti/Eduarda Lisboa.