2017 EUROPEAN BEACH VOLLEYBALL CHAMPIONSHIPS
- August 16th-20th, 2017
- Jurmala, Latvia
- Pool Standings
- Tournament Central
Whatever demons were plaguing Italian pair Alex Ranghieri and Adrian Carambula in Austria at the World Championships (as they expressed in this video) appear to have been excised two weeks later in Latvia at the European Championships.
The two, who entered the tournament seeded just 17th and as only the 3rd-best in pool A, rolled through the opening rounds of competition without dropping a set (and with the third-best points ratio of the tournament) to earn a bye in the first round of the knockout stages.
The winning pair in each of 8 pools at the tournament advances automatically to the second round of play. The 2nd and 3rd place teams in each pool will begin in the first round and play knockout matches on Friday morning for the right to face those pool winners in the evening
Among those winners were Ranghieri/Carambula, who among their wins counted a 2-0 (21-18, 21-17) sweep of top-seeded Bartosz Losiak/Piotr Kantor on Wednesday. That win, along with two others, have guaranteed Ranghieri/Carambula of a top 16 finish this week – something they couldn’t do at the World Championships (tied for 17th), and something that in fact they’ve only done once this season on the World Tour when they took 9th at the Rio 4-star event.
Italy and Russia each won two pools on Thursday. The top Italian side and defending champions Paolo Nicolai/Daniele Lupo were unbeaten in Pool B (though unlike their compatriots, they lost a set). For Russia, 3rd-seeded Nikita Liamin/Viacheslav Kraslinikov and 8th-seeded Oleg Stoyanovsky/Artem Yartzutkin both won their pools, though in the case of the latter it was just a 2-1 record after a loss to French pair Maxime Thiercy/Romain Di Giantommaso, the 24-seeds.
Other than the previously-discussed Italians, the pools went by-and-large to chalk. The top seeds won 6 of the 8 pools, and the second-seeded teams finished second in 6 of the 8 pools. Besides Pool A, the other one that came out a bit upended was Pool G, where rising Norwegians Anders Mol/Christian Sorum as 10 seeds were a perfect 3-0, and like Ranghieri/Carambula didn’t drop a set in pool play. The two are a very young pair, Mol only barely 20 years old and Sorum a few months from 22 years old, and they didn’t qualify for the World Championships. This year, the two have bounced around among partners and had success, but seem to have found a winning combination together this week. They won a CEV event earlier this year in Ljubljana and placed 3rd in Espinho, Portugal – the 2-star event that overlapped with the World Championships.
Latvian men’s side Aleksandrs Samoilovs/Janis Smedins, just like their 8th-seeded female counterparts, waltzed through the opening round undefeated, dropping just a single set.
Pool Winners, Who Advance to 2nd Round of Knockout:
- Pool A – #17 Ranghieri/Carambula, Italy, 3W 0L
- Pool B – #2 Lupo/Nicolai, Italy, 3W 0L
- Pool C – #3 LIamin/Kraslinikov, Russia 3W 0L
- Pool D – #4 Samoilovs/Smedins, Latvia, 3W 0L
- Pool E – #5 Fijalek/Bryl, Poland, 3W 0L
- Pool F – #6 Brouwer/Meeuwsen, Netherlands, 3W 0L
- Pool G – #10 Mol/Sorum, Norway, 3W 0L
- Pool F – #8 Stoyanosvkiy/Yarzutkin, Russia – 2W 1L
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