Casper Haanappel dives for the ball during the match against Sagir and Cebeci
Samsun, Turkey, July 28, 2018 – Bottom-seeded Stefan Boermans and Casper Haanappel of the Netherlands, who made it to the men’s main draw at the Samsun one-star stop on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour through Thursday’s qualifications, advanced all the way to the last four of the tournament. Two pairs from the Czech Republic and one from Austria will also play for the medals on the Turkish Black Sea coast.
Boermans and Haanappel, who were the only team that had to win two qualification matches to progress to the main draw as the 16th-seeded pair and finished third in their pool to make the elimination phase, sensationally added two tie-breaker victories to their tally on Saturday to stay in contention for the medals. The Dutch duo started their day with a hard-fought 2-1 (22-20, 20-22, 15-6) first-round victory over fourth-seeded home favourites Ali Berke Sagir and Ali Cebeci. In the last quarterfinal, they came back from a set down to defeat Czech Republic’s Jakub Gala and David Kufa by 2-1 (15-21, 21-10, 15-6).
Thomas Kunert and Peter Eglseer were the first team to qualify for the semifinals. In their only match on Saturday, the fifth-seeded Austrians took 53 minutes to overcome the resistance of top-seeded Rahman Raoufi and Abolhamed Mirzaali of Iran on the way to a 2-1 (21-18, 13-21, 15-11) upset.
Jindrich Weiss and Donovan Dzavoronok managed a much speedier quarterfinal victory. The eighth-seeded Czech pair knocked Serbia’s Djordje Klasnic and Marko Plavsic out with a 37-minute 2-0 (21-15, 21-14) shutout. “I am happy that we could win the match and qualified to the semis. Thank you to the home fans for their support,” Weiss said.
Weiss spikes past Plavsic’s block
In a quarterfinal battle between the teams seeded third and second in the main draw, Czech Republic’s Marcel Myslivecek and Martin Pihera persevered through one hour and three minutes of nip-and-tuck beach volleyball against Iran’s Bahman Salemiinjehboroun and Arash Vakili to claim a 2-1 (21-17, 19-21, 15-13) victory and a spot in the semis. Before upsetting the higher seeded opponents, Myslivecek and Pihera started their elimination phase campaign with a 2-0 (21-14, 21-18) first round win over Hungary’s Botond Olah and Balazs Benko.
On Sunday at 11:50 local time, Kunert and Eglseer will meet Weiss and Dzavoronok on court 2 and Boermans and Haanappel will measure up to Myslivecek and Pihera on centre court. The medal matches will take place at 15:30 and 16:30.