Vienna, Austria, July 29, 2017 - The reigning Olympic champions from Brazil and Germany won their opening pool play matches here Saturday mid-day as the US$1-million FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships presented by A1 is in the midst of its second of 10 days of competition.
With 28 matches scheduled Saturday on three courts at the state-of-the art venue at Donauinsel with the focal point of the action and entertainment being held with a picturesque view of the Danube River and the lively atmosphere of the Beach Village, teams from Brazil, Canada, Chile, Cuba, Germany, Italy, Poland and the United States won early matches.
The fifth-seeded Alison Cerutti and Bruno Oscar Schmidt, who are seeking to become the first men’s team to win consecutive world championship gold medals after claiming the 2015 title at The Hague, posted a 2-0 (21-13, 21-13) Pool E win in 30 minutes over 44th-seeded African qualifiers Aldevino Nguvo/Justino Tovela of Mozambique.
Fourth-seeded and Rio Olympic champions Laura Ludwig and Kira Walkenhorst won their second match of the 2017 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships by out-lasting German rivals and 28th-seeded Nadja Glenzke/Julia Grossner 2-1 (17-21, 21-15, 15-12) in a 49-minute Pool D match.
Ludwig and Walkenhorst conclude group action Monday on the Red Bull Beach Arena center court against the third German team in the pool - 21st-seeded Karla Borger/Margareta Kozuch. Earning a “wild card” for the event, Borger and Kozuch defeated compatriots Glenzke and Grossner 2-0 (21-16, 21-17) in 39 minutes Friday.
Borger, who placed second in the 2013 FIVB World Championships with Britta Buthe in Stare Jablonki, Poland, and Kozuch play their second Pool D match later Saturday against 45th-seeded African qualifiers Mahassine Siad/Imane Zeroual of Morocco, who lost to Ludwig and Walkenhorst 2-0 (21-10, 21-12) in 25 minutes Friday.
A total of 216-matches will be played over a 10-day period at the world championships where the winning men’s and women’s teams will each split the $60,000 first-place prizes. The women’s medal matches will be played August 5 and the men’s August 6. With 96 teams from 40 countries in the competition, pool play will highlight the first six days of play with the featured court being the 10,000-seat Red Bull Beach Arena.