Brazil men

Renato Andrew Lima de Carvalho and Adrielson Dos Santos Silva took Brazil’s second gold of the day defeating Russia’s Aleksandr Kramarenko and Vasilii Ivanov 2-0 (22-20, 21-17) in the 2017 FIVB Beach Volleyball U21 World Championships final.

As the final match of the Nanjing tournament started to take shape it was the Russian team that had the upper hand. A run of unforced errors from Renato/Adrielson at the midway mark led to Kramarenko/Ivanov reaching set point.

The Nanjing crowd then watched the following points unfold in amazement as the Russian team missed one after another set point before it was Renato/Adrielson who took eight points in a row to win the set 22-20.

There was nothing in it in the second with athletic performances from each of the four men on court. A few mistakes from Kramarenko/Ivanov and Renato/Adrielson pulled away at the end to earn another gold for Brazil.

“We’re extremely happy, it’s always a pleasure to win. I really want to thank everyone that supports me all the time. It’s very special for me every time I represent Brazil. This win is great for my career. It’s always good to win the U19 and then the U21,” said Renato.

Renato took gold in the U19 Larnaka World Championships last year and plays with Adrielson for the first time in Nanjing.

“This gold really shows how much we trained and how much we put our effort into every single game and now we’re looking forward to celebrate,” said Adrielson.

“The match was tough in the beginning, I couldn’t find myself. But my partner was getting all the balls and helped me out,” said Renato.

The silver for Kramarenko/Ivanov is a good result after the pair took silver at the European Championships last year and play in their first international together.

Latvia’s Kristaps Smits and Mihails Samoilovs take home another age-group bronze medal defeating Moritz Fabien Kindl and Marian Klaffinger from Austria in two sets, 2-0 (21-17, 21-17).Smits/Samoilovs won bronze at the 2016 U19 World Championships in Larnaka and faced Kindl/Klaffinger who entered the final four in Nanjing after taking the lucky loser spot from the qualification tournament.

There was little between the two teams in the first set who had clearly studied each other beforehand and trying everything to outwit the other. Austria had a slight edge in the first set, but Latvia were never far behind with a massive Klaffinger block at 5-9, answered with the wrath of two powerful Samoilovs spikes.

Smits/Samoilovs began to run away with it in the second, with both Smits and Samoilovs very difficult to defend given half a chance at the net and the bronze was theirs.

“Of course bronze, it’s a medal. It’s our second bronze in a row, so we’re a little bit unsatisfied and want to play once in a final. Before this tournament we had a camp in Alicante with the Spanish guys and there we were playing really bad, so we didn’t expect a medal here. But when we came here we calmed down, relaxed a bit and showed our game,” said Samoilovs.

“The match was a little bit stressful because we know how these guys have been playing and they played really well. In the second set we took the lead after we calmed down and we understood how we had to play. Then they started to serve quite aggressively and I didn’t have such good reception, but finally we got those last points,” said Samoilovs.

The fourth place result for Kindl/Klaffinger is their best to date playing in their first international tournament together.