Japan’s Suzuki/Murakami, China’s Gao/Li Win Singapore One Star

  0 Wendy Mayer | June 24th, 2018 | FIVB World Tour, News, Pro Beach

Singapore Two Star

Two new FIVB World Tour champions were crowned Sunday at the Singapore Two Star. Japan’s Chiyo Suzuki/Reika Murakami and China’s Peng Gao/Yang Li won their first titles.

The Singapore gold gives the Suzuki/Murakami their second FIVB medal, following a bronze at the Jinjiang Two Star (June 3).

Suzuki/Murakami bested countrywomen Takemi Nishibori/Ayumi Kusano in straight sets for the title (23-21, 21-15), marking their fourth-straight win of the tournament.

“This is a very big surprise,” Suzuki said.  “I couldn’t believe it when they said we were the champions… this is a dream. I’m so happy because this is the first time we’re getting an FIVB gold medal.  In the second set, we tried to play a little differently from the first set, including using different types of service to move our opponents around and tire them out.”

In Saturday’s semifinal, the duo moved on with a straight set win over Sweden’s Tadva Yoken/Sigrid Simonsson (21-18, 21-16).

Nishibori/Kusano rallied past Germany’s Anna Behlen/Sarah Schneider 20-22, 21-19, 16-14. 

The silver is the third medal in 2018 for Nishibori/Kusano, following gold at the Manila One Star (May 6) and bronze at the Bangkok One Star (May 13).

Behlen/Schneider went on to take the bronze with a tiebreak win over Yoken/Simonsson (27-25, 13-21, 15-11). The Germans take their second FIVB medal of the year after winning the title at the Phnom Penh Two Star (May 6).

On the men’s side, Gao/Li earned their second FIVB medal after taking bronze at the Jinjiang Two Star (June 3).

Gao/Li topped Estonia’s Kusti Nolvak/Mart Tiisaar 21-14, 21-18 in the title match.

The Chinese pair made the final after besting Indonesia’s Ade “Candra” Rachmawan/Mohammad Ashfiya in tiebreak (20-22, 21-14, 15-10).

Nolvak/Tiisaar moved past Slovenia’s Nejc Zemljak/Jan Pokersnik in the other semifinal (21-14, 22-20). The silver medal marked the first podium finish for Nolvak/Tiisaar since a bronze at the Langkawi One Star (April 16).

Candra/Ashfiya took home the bronze with a 28-26, 22-20 win over Zemljak/Pokersnik. The medal is the pair’s second of 2018 after a runner-up effort at the Satun One Star (April 11).

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About Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer has worked in athletics media relations for the last 20 years. The Northwest Missouri State alumna is currently senior writer for Volleymob.com after spending the last 15 years with Purdue athletics.

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