The new FIVB Beach World Rankings have been released, with Poland’s Bartosz Losiak/Piotr Kantor and Brazil’s Talita Antunes/Larissa Franca at the top of their fields. The rankings are determined by a pairings top-8 results over the past 365 days with them being readjusted following every FIVB recognized event granted FIVB Rankings Points.
It is a new year and a new tour, with the Hague starting things off right after the first of the year. The 2018 Tour will feature more than 1,800 matches across more than 30 events on the year, with the prize money allotted to winner rising from $3.3 million to $7 million for the year.
The new year has brought new partnerships together as well as old ones falling apart. Among the biggest are:
- April Ross pairs with Alix Klineman
- Trevor Crabb and Sean Rosenthal call it quits
- Italy’s Adrian Carambula to partner with Enrico Cester
- Talita Antunes pregnant, Larissa Franca to take break
- Laura Ludwig pregnant, Kira Walkenhorst to find new partner in meantime
The first five-star Major Series event will be in the United State at Fort Lauderdale from February 27 to March 4. The remaining five-star events will be Gstaad from July 10-15 and Vienna from July 31-August 5. Hamburg will also repeat as the World Tour Finals host this season, being the first location to be selected more than once for the event and in consecutive years.
Women’s Beach Rankings
Topping the women’s rankings are Franca/Antunes who will not be participating in the FIVB World Tour this season due to Antunes being pregnant. With the announcement of Antunes’ pregnancy, Franca said she would take the time as a break from the sand.
In at #2 are Sarah Pavan/Melissa Humana-Paredes, though they are more than 1,000 points out of reach from the Brazilian duo at 4,480 points. Pavan recently took to the indoor court with Pomi Casalmaggiore but parted ways with the club so she could focus on the 2018 beach season with Humana-Paredes.
Sitting way back at #13 is Laura Ludwig/Kira Walkenhorst despite winning the 2017 FIVB World Championships and the FIVB World Tour Finals. Ludwig announced that she would be out for the majority of the 2018 season due to a pregnancy while Walkenhorst is recovering from a minor hip surgery but is due back on the sand later this year.
Popping into the top-15 from the United State are Brooke Sweat/Summer Ross at #8 and Sara Hughes/Kelly Claes at #14.
Men’s Beach Rankings
Losiak/Kantor hit the top spot on the men’s side with 4,400 points to their name, this is just 220 points ahead of Brazil’s Andre Loyola and Evandro Goncalves who sit in second place. Propelling them into the top spot was the recent event in The Hague, where they took second place behind Latvia’s Martins Plavins/Edgars Rocs. The silver medal finish gave them a $16,000 payout along with 720 points to their names in the world rankings.
Phil Dalhausser/Nick Lucena sit at #5 with 3,840 points to their names. Also sitting farther back on the list are 2016 Rio Olympic Champions Bruno Schmidt/Alison Cerruti at #7.