Gstaad Five Star – Beach Major Series
The opening round of pool play at the Gstaad Major was ripe with upsets as four of the top eight seeds fell. Meanwhile, eight teams went on to earn pool titles, claiming spots in the second elimination round on Friday.
All four Brazilian teams dropped their opening matches, including top seeded Vitor Felipe/Evandro Goncalves Oliveira, who went down in a straight set match against 32nd-seeded Americans Chase Budinger/Sean Rosenthal.
Second seeded Brazilians Alison Cerutti/Andre Loyola also were among the first match casualties, falling 21-19, 29-27 to qualifiers Andrea Abbiati/Tiziano Andreatta of Italy.
George Wanderley/Thiago Santos Barbosa and Pedro Solberg/Bruno Schmidt also lost, with the later falling in tiebreak (19-21,21-18, 15-12) to Canada’s Sam Pedlow/Sam Schachter.
No. 7 Clemens Doppler/Alexander Horst of Austria also lost their tournament opener, while fifth seeded Americans Phil Dalhausser/Nick Lucena, the reigning Gstaad champions, stumbled in tiebreak in the Pool E title match.
Americans Taylor Crabb/Jake Gibb were among eight pool winners crowned after two rounds of pool play on Wednesday.
No. 21 Crabb/Gibb started their day by rallying for an upset win over 2016 Olympic silver medalists Daniele Lupo/Paolo Nicolai of Italy (15-21, 21-17, 15-12). The pair then battled through another tiebreak win, this time over countrymen Dalhausser/Lucena (22-24, 21-17, 15-13) for the Pool E crown.
Belgium’s No. 26 seeded Dries Koekelkoren/Tom van Walle also scored a major upsets on Wednesday, moving past Doppler/Horst (18-21, 21-15, 15-12). A win over fellow qualifiers Ahmed Tijan/Cherif Younousse of Qatar gave the Belgians the Pool G title.
The six remaining pool winners were:
- Pool A: No. 3 Gregorz Fijalek/Michal Bryl (Poland)
- Pool B: Anders Mol/Christian Sorum (Norway)
- Pool C: Piotr Kantor/Bartosz Losiak (Poland)
- Pool D: No. 4 Alexander Brouwer/Robert Meeuwsen
- Pool F: No. 6 Adrian Gavira/Pablo Herrera (Spain)
- Pool H: No. 8 Mirco Gerson/Adrian Heidrich
Budinger/Rosenthal lost to Fijalek/Bryl in the Pool A title match 21-16, 21-18. Andreatta/Abbiati fell to Mol/Sorum 21-10, 21-14 in the Pool B championship match.
The final pool play matches as well as the first elimination round are slated for Thursday.