Russians validate world ranking at Dela Beach Open in The Hague
Russia's Nikita Liamin (left) and Viacheslav Krasilnikov with their gold medals at the Dela Beach Open in The hague.
The Hague, Netherlands, June 18, 2017 – After losing a three-set gold medal match two weeks ago on home sand in Moscow, Viacheslav Krasilnikov and Nikita Liamin did not duplicate their fate in the Russian capital here Sunday by out-lasting Spaniards Adrian Gavira/Pablo Herrera to win the men’s title at the $150,000 Dela Beach Open.
With a 2-0 (23-21, 22-20) win in 43 minutes over the sixth-seeded Gavira and Herrera, the seventh-seeded Krasilnikov and Liamin validated their No. 1-ranking on the 2017 FIVB World Tour points list as the Russians secured their second gold medal this season and third podium placement in six events this season on the international Beach Volleyball circuit.
Two weeks ago, in Moscow, Krasilnikov and Liamin forced a third-set with Phil Dalhausser and Nick Lucena before losing 2-1 (21-17, 22-24, 18-16) in a 52-minute finale in the Russia capital. With the Krasilnikov/Liamin partnership beginning this season, the Russian pair captured the gold medal on Kish Island in Iran in February.
“We are thrilled with this win against a very good Spanish team,” said the 31-year Liamin, who placed fifth in the Rio 2016 Olympics Games with Dmitri Barsouk after being eliminated in the Copacabana quarter-finals by eventual silver medal winners Daniele Lupo and Paolo Nicolai of Italy. “Our season has been like a roller-coaster with three “lower” finishes until reaching the finals in Moscow.”
Prior to Moscow, Krasilnikov and Liamin placed ninth in mid-April in Xiamen China, and 17th in mid-May in Rio de Janeiro. Prior to winning on Kish Island, the Russians placed ninth in the SWATCH Major Series stop in the United States on Fort Lauderdale Beach Park in Florida. With a 20-7 match mark this season, one of Krasilnikov and Liamin’s setbacks was a two-set pool play decision to Gavira and Herrera in Rio.
As for the world rankings based solely on points accumulated from events so far in 2017, Krasilnikov and Liamin have compiled 2,260 points with Lupo and Nicolai second with 1,920 points for five participations together this season.
To gain a spot in their third FIVB World Tour gold medal match this season, Krasilnikov and Liamin scored a 2-0 (21-18, 21-18) semi-final victory Saturday in 40 minutes over 20th-seeded Nico Beeler and Marco Krattiger of Switzerland. Gavira and Herrera advanced to their seventh FIVB gold medal match by defeating the seventh-seeded Lupo and Nicolai 2-0 (21-19, 21-16) in a 38-minute semi-final match.
In the bronze medal match, Lupo and Nicolai garner their 17 FIVB World Tour medal by posting a 2-0 (21-18, 21-15) win in 35 minutes over Beeler and Krattiger, who were competing in their first-ever international “final four”. The Italians split $5,000 for third-place with Beeler and Krattiger sharing $4,000.
The Dela Beach Open podium (left to right) features Pablo Herrera, Adrian Gavira, Nikita Liamin, Viacheslav Krasilnikov, Daniele Lupo and Paolo Nicolai.
Being played at the Sportcampus Zuiderpark, a newly-constructed multifunctional sports and education center, the Dela Beach Open was the first-ever FIVB World Tour event to stage competition on both indoor and outdoor courts at the same time. In addition, international Beach Volleyball competition was being held in conjunction with FIVB World League contests where The Netherlands was hosting the Czech Republic, Korea and the Slovak Republic this weekend at the 3,000-seat venue which is also the new training center for the Dutch federation's Beach Volleyball program.
Following the Dela Beach Open, the international circuit takes a week off before resuming play with SWATCH Major Series stops in Croatia (Porec, June 27-July 2) and Switzerland (Gstaad, July 4-9). Highlighting the 2017 international calendar for men and women Beach Volleyball players will be the $1-million FIVB World Championships July 28 through August 6 in Vienna and the $800,000 SWATCH FIVB World Tour Finals August 23-27 in Hamburg, Germany.