Upsets all round in Xiamen see Perusic/Schweiner enter main draw
News from the FIVB
Xiamen, China, April 20, 2017. The FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Xiamen Open 2017 witnessed multiple upsets in the qualification tournament, which saw Czech Republic’s Ondrej Perusic and David Schweiner defeat Jefferson/Cherif of Qatar to enter the main draw.
Perusic/Schweiner entered their qualification match as underdogs, but it was soon clear that Jefferson/Cherif were in for a challenging time. Both teams displayed nerves as neither could close out the first set, finishing 25-23 in favour of the Czech team.
A shaky second set sent Perusic/Schweiner on catch up in the tiebreak, but they held their nerve to enter Xiamen main draw, 2-1 (25-23, 16-21, 15-12).
“We feel amazing, it’s indescribable. We fought, despite the second set when we were the worse team than them and in the tiebreak we were a bit luckier, let’s say,” said Perusic.
“We have never played them before, but they are really good with big results, but in spite of many mistakes, luckily we won. I think this result was unexpected,” said Schweiner.
“We hope to have good performances in the tournament, if we lose with a good performance, it’s not that bad,” said Perusic.
Brazil’s Oscar Brandão and Hevaldo Sabino Moreira produced a major upset knocking out top seeded qualifiers Sean Faiga/Ariel Hilman from Israel in a match that swung both ways. Everything was left down to the tiebreak and in their first international tournament together Oscar/Hevaldo took the match and main draw position, 2-1 (21-12, 16-21, 15-12).
Estonia’s Mart Tiisaar and Kusti Nõlvak enter Xiamen off the back of bronze medal at the Malaysian Open the previous week and overturned Germany’s Lorenz Schümann/Julius Thole 2-0 (21-16, 21-18).
Another pair who beat a higher seeded team was France’s Youssef Krou and Quincy Ayé. The French team beat Norway’s Daniel Bergerud/Svein Oddmund Solhaug 2-1 (21-18, 17-21, 15-11) to enter their first main draw together after Ayé made the move from indoor Volleyball only half a year before.
“I’m so happy because it’s my first qualification in the main draw. I started Beach Volleyball in September,” said Ayé. “I feel great also because it’s our third qualification match this year and we had to win one to feel better and to continue working,” said Krou.
If that was not enough, Switzerland’s Mirco Gerson and Michiel Zandbergen continued the theme of the day in a tiebreak against Turkish team Murat Giginoglu/Safa Urlu 2-1 (19-21, 21-16, 15-13).
“It’s great! I mean it was a very close game. It was a little bit lucky with a lot of rallies and at least we were the luckier team, but we are very happy we won,” said Gerson.
“This is our first season together. We played one tournament last season and after that we decided, why not give it a try,” said Zandbergen.
USA’s Sean Rosenthal/Trevor Crabb, Latvia’s Edgars Tocs/Rihards Finsters and Martin Ermacora/Moritz Pristauz-Telsnigg from Austria also make up the teams to qualify for the main draw, which begins on April 21 in Xiamen.
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