Plavins and Peda claim international tournament in Latvia
News from the National Federations
Riga, Latvia, July 1, 2013. The city of Saulkrasti played host this past weekend to the third stop of Latvia’s Beach Volleyball Championship. The tournament known as “Saulkrastu kokteilis” celebrated this year its twentieth anniversary and was for the first time included into the program of the national tour that this summer will be stopping in many other cities in Latvia. With only a few days left before the start of the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championship in nearby Stare Jablonki, Poland, all of Latvia’s best pairs – Samoilovs/J. Smedins, Plavins/Peda and Sorokins/T. Smedins – as well as teams from Estonia, including Vesik/Kollo, Lithuania, Russia and Canada joined the competition.
After edging Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Janis Smedins in the semis (22-20, 18-21, and 15-10), 2012 Olympic bronze medalist Martins Plavins and partner Janis Peda got past Ruslan Sorokins and Toms Smedins in the final match (24-26, 21-19, and 15-7). Samoilovs and Janis Smedins – the very best European duo this year on the FIVB World Tour – had to be content with bronze as they cruised past Canada’s Ben Saxton and Chaim Schalk in the “small final” (21-19, 17-21, and 19-17).
The names of Plavins and Peda will be engraved on the cup of the tournament thereby bringing the total up to 40 before next year’s tournament. Janis Grinbergs remains the multiple winner of the competition with 6 titles (1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2004 and 2007) together with Andris Krumins (1996, 1999, 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2010).
In Stare Jablonki – where the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championship got started on Monday – Latvia will be represented by three pairs in the men’s competition – Samoilovs/J. Smedins, plus Plavins/Peda and Sorokins/T. Smedins – while 2009 European champion Inguna Minusa received a wild-card to join the tournament together with 34-year old Inga Ikauniece.
Samoilovs and Janis Smedins are seen as real contenders for a spot on the podium after they won the Corrientes Grand Slam in Argentina following up with two silver medals in The Hague and Rome in the past weeks.
Click here for a picture gallery of the tournament held in Saulkrasti