Beach Volleyball World Championships Tlaxcala 2023 - News

Mol, A./Sørum, C. (NOR) vs. Perusic/Schweiner (CZE) - Quarterfinals #7441298

Perusic and Schweiner celebrate their quarterfinal victory over Mol and Sørum in Tlaxcala

The men’s semifinals of the 2023 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships won’t feature defending champions Anders Mol and Christian Sørum as the Norwegians were knocked out by Czechs Ondrej Perusic and David Schweiner in the most exciting and surprising match of the quarterfinal round on Friday.

Besides the Czechs, Poland’s Michal Bryl/Bartosz Łosiak, Sweden’s David Åhman/Jonatan Hellvig and USA's Theo Brunner/Trevor Crabb also advanced to the semifinals, which will be held on Saturday in Tlaxcala.

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Bryl/Łosiak and Åhman/Hellvig will battle in the first semifinal, set to start at 17:00 local time (23:00 UTC), with Perusic/Schweiner meeting Brunner/Crabb two hours later at the Tlaxcala Bullring.

Perusic and Schweiner showed nerves of steel to upset Olympic and world champions Mol and Sørum in the tie-breaker (21-14, 14-21, 15-12) in the quarterfinals in Tlaxcala and advance to the World Championships semifinals for the first time.

“What we just did, we didn’t even believe we were capable of beating the Norwegians in one of the most important tournaments of the Olympic quad,” Perusic told Volleyball World. “They’re by far the best team in the world and to beat them we knew we had to play well and to have a little bit of luck, as we did especially at the start of the tie-breaker. The match against Herrera and Gavira in the Round of 32 was a turning point for us because we finally performed at the level we wanted and that gave us confidence to keep going.”

The Czechs arrived in Mexico with plenty of confidence after taking gold at the Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour Paris Elite16 the week before, but saw their momentum go away with two losses in pool play. The start of the elimination rounds brought their best version back to the sand and culminated in a great win against the Olympic and world champions.

“It’s a big victory for us,” Schweiner remarked. “Mol and Sørum are, of course, incredible opponents, but we played a very good match here and also had some luck. We didn’t play well at all in pool play, but we’ve been improving in every match in the elimination rounds, it really looks like we’re a different team now. We hope we can play even better in the semifinals and hopefully make it to the final.”

Their semifinal opponents, Brunner and Crabb dominated Brazilians Pedro Solberg and Gustavo 'Guto' Carvalhaes in two sets (21-17, 21-14) in Huamantla to book their spots in the semifinals.

Beach Volleyball World Championships - Match Schedule and Results

In the other quarterfinal held in Tlaxcala, Poles Bryl and Łosiak eliminated Americans Miles Partain and Andy Benesh with a straight-set (21-19, 21-16) victory and will both appear in the semifinals of the World Championships for the first time in their careers.

“This is like a dream for us,” Bryl reacted. “We became partners a year and a half ago and to do well at this event was one of our main goals. The Americans are a really good team and have been unstoppable at times this season. We’re very happy that we made it.”

Their next opponents, Åhman and Hellvig were pushed to their limits by Dutch Stefan Boermans and Yorick de Groot in Apizaco, but managed to secure a three-set (32-30, 22-24, 15-12) win and advance to the semifinals in the first appearance at the World Championships.

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2023 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships
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