Toms Smedins spikes past the block of Simon Fruehbauer
Agadir, Morocco, July 27, 2018 – Two teams from Austria, two from Latvia and one each from Argentina and Russia emerged as pool winners as men’s main draw action at the Agadir two-star event on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour got underway on Friday.
Toms Smedins and Haralds Regza were the lowest seeded pair to start off with two victories to win their pool. Starting off from position 20 in the 24-team main draw, the Latvians delivered a 2-0 (21-15, 21-16) upset of fifth-seeded Austrians Joerg Wutzl and Simon Fruehbauer, before disposing of Norway’s Svein Oddmund Solhaug and Lars Tveit Retterholt with a 2-0 (21-18, 21-18) win on the way to the top of Pool E.
Another Latvian duo, fourth-seeded Aleksandrs Solovejs and Rihards Finsters, headed the standings in Pool D after two straight-set victories over Swedish opponents – 2-0 (21-18, 26-24) over Linus Tholse and Jakob Molin and 2-0 (24-22, 21-17) over Martin Appelgren and Simon Boman.
Florian Schnetzer and Daniel Muellner won Pool C. The 10th-seeded Austrians started their day with a 2-0 (21-13, 25-23) victory over Germany’s Armin Dollinger and Simon Kulzer and followed up with a 2-0 (21-16, 21-18) upset of third-seeded Italians Tiziano Andreatta and Andrea Abbiati.
Alexander Huber and Christoph Dressler, also of Austria, had to overcome two Czech obstacles on the way to the first place in Pool F. In their first game, Huber and Dressler cruised to a 2-0 (21-16, 21-16) win over David Lenc and Filip Habr. In the winners’ duel with Jan Dumek and Vaclav Bercik, the Austrians persevered through three sets of hard-fought battle to claim a 2-1 (21-19, 16-21, 15-11) victory.
Top-seeded Nicolas Capogrosso and Julian Amado Azaad of Argentina had to come back from a set down in the winners’ match of Pool A, but eventually hammered out a 2-1 (18-21, 21-16, 15-11) win over Spain’s Raul Mesa and Christian Garcia. In their first match at Agadir, Capogrosso and Azaad beat Italy’s Davide Benzi and Luca Spirito 2-0 (21-14, 21-19).
Quentin Metral and Simon Hagenbuch delivered a 2-0 (21-18, 21-17) upset of second-seeded Lihuanians Arnas Rumsevicius and Lukas Kazdailis to win Pool B. Before that, the Swiss pair overpowered Russia’s Maksim Hudyakov and Ruslan Bykanov on the way to a hard-fought 2-0 (23-21, 21-19) victory.
The losers’ matches in the six pools will be played on Saturday.