Germans Bergmann & Harms upset top seeds in Gstaad Major men’s qualifying
Philipp Bergmann (left) and Yannick Harms celebrate after upsetting the top-seeded men's team in the Gstaad Major qualifier Tuesday in the Swiss Alps village.
Gstaad, Switzerland, July 10, 2018 - Philipp Bergmann and Yannick Harms posted the biggest upset here Tuesday in the men’s qualifier at the US$600,000 Gstaad Major as the 16th-seeded Germans posted a pair of wins highlighted by a three-set victory over top-seeded Mariusz Prudel/Jakub Szalankiewicz of Poland.
Eight men’s Beach Volleyball pairs from seven countries compiled unbeaten qualifying records Tuesday to advance to the Main Draw at the FIVB World Tour event where competition continues through the weekend with medal matches on both Saturday and Sunday in the Swiss Alps village.
With eight Olympians in the men’s qualifier, only three of the top eight-seeded teams earned spots in the “money” rounds starting Wednesday with pool play action for both genders. The men start bracket play Thursday afternoon with quarter-final action Friday afternoon.
The men’s quarter-finals will set the lineup for Saturday’s with the semi-final and medal matches. The women’s elimination rounds will be contested Friday with the quarter-finals on Saturday and the “final four” confrontations Sunday. The winning teams will share the $40,000 first-place prizes.
In advancing to a FIVB main draw for the fourth time in nine attempts this season, Bergmann and Harms posted both qualifying wins Tuesday over Polish teams starting with a 2-0 (21-19, 21-15) victory in 33 minutes over 17th-seeded Kacper Kujawiak/Maciej Rudol followed by a 2-1 (15021, 22-20, 15-9) triumph in 45 minutes over Prudel and Szalankiewicz.
Italy had two teams qualify for Wednesday’s action, including fourth-seeded Marco Caminati/Enrico Rossi and 27th-seeded Andrea Abbiati/Tiziano Andreatta. Caminati/Ross ousted pairs from Spain and China while Abbiati/Andreatta were successful against higher-seeded pairs form Mexico and Finland.
Other teams qualifying Tuesday were fifth-seeded Ahmed Tijan/Cherif Younousse of Qatar, eighth-seeded Thiago Santos Barbosa/George Wanderley of Brazil, 10th-seeded Tigrito Gomez/Carlos Rangel of Venezuela, 14th-seeded Dries Koekelkoren/Tom van Walle of Belgium and 15th-seeded Murat Giginoglu/Volkan Gogtepe of Turkey.