Home favourites Ondrej Perusic & David Schweiner made a strong start to their new campaign in Ostrava as the Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour Elite16 men’s main draw got underway on Thursday. The Czech pair claimed two straight-set victories in their first two matches of pool play.
Home heroes Perusic & Schweiner start strong in Ostrava
Published 05:31, 01 Jun 2023
In each of their two games, however, Perusic & Schweiner were pushed to overtime in one of the sets. In their opening game, the fourth-seeded Czech duo managed a 2-0 (21-15, 26-24) win over Chile’s Marco Grimalt & Esteban Grimalt. Schweiner’s 26-point match high included four kill blocks and an ace. In the afternoon, they were pushed by Germany’s Clemens Wickler & Nils Ehlers to overtime in the first set, but then cruised in the second towards a 2-0 (25-23, 21-12) shutout. It was once again Schweiner’s blocking that made the difference with six stuffs towards a 22-point match high.
In the morning, the Germans also started with a win, a 2-1 (19-21, 21-17, 15-6) comeback against American qualifiers Miles Partain & Andrew Benesh. Both Ehlers (five aces) and Wickler reached the 20+ mark in the match. The Americans then bounced back with a 2-0 (21-16, 21-14) sweep of their meeting with the Chilean cousins with a 24-point tally from Partain.
Top-seeded Olympic champions Anders Mol & Christian Sorum of Norway started their Pool A campaign with a 2-0 (21-18, 21-14) shutout of Brazil’s Pedro Solberg & Gustavo Carvalhaes (Guto), as Mol impressed with seven kill blocks. Meanwhile, France’s Youssef Krou & Arnaud Gauthier-Rat mastered a 2-0 (21-17, 21-15) sweep of their game against US qualifiers Trevor Crabb & Theodore Brunner, with five kill blocks from Krou.
In the evening session, the Norwegians and the Frenchmen went head to head in search of their second win of the tournament. In a hard-fought three-set battle, the Beachvolley Vikings lost the first set in the overtime, but then recovered to snatch a 2-1 (22-24, 21-19, 15-5) victory. Mol was on fire again, tallying up as many as 10 kill blocks and two aces towards a match total of 25 points. At the same time, Crabb & Brunner bounced back from their loss with a 2-1 (19-21, 21-19, 15-11) comeback victory over Pedro Solberg & Guto, as Brunner hammered out 29 points, including seven blocks and two aces.
The first leg of matches was played in Pool B. Tokyo 2020 Olympic bronze medallists Cherif Younousse & Ahmed Tijan of Qatar mounted a solid comeback from a set down against Brazilian qualifiers Evandro Oliveira & Arthur Mariano to celebrate a 2-1 (17-21, 21-18, 15-10) victory on a 22-point match high from Ahmed, including five aces. On the other side of the net, Evandro did even better from the serving line, piling up six aces during the match. In the pool’s other high-calibre clash between the number two and the number three teams in the World Ranking, second-seeded Swedes David Ahman & Jonatan Hellvig produced a 2-0 (21-14, 21-17) shutout of Dutch duo Alexander Brouwer & Robert Meeuwsen.
Third-seeded Adrian Carambula & Alex Ranghieri of Italy struggled a bit in their opening set against the home team of Krystof Jan Oliva and Tadeas Trousil, but managed to take the victory in straight sets, 2-0 (22-20, 21-18). The Czechs completely outserved their opponents, scoring five aces against only one, but that proved insufficient for winning the game. In the other Pool C match, Poland’s Michal Bryl & Bartosz Losiak prevailed over Brazilian qualifiers Renato Lima & Vitor Felipe on the way to an emphatic 2-0 (21-13, 21-15) shutout.
Men’s pool play resumes on Friday morning at 10:10 local time (08:10 UTC).