Florian Schnetzer and Daniel Muellner in action during their first qualification match in Baden
Baden, Austria, June 14, 2018 – Florian Schnetzer and Daniel Muellner were the fifth Austrian men’s team to qualify for the main draw at the Baden one-star event on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour by winning against teams from the Czech Republic and Sweden in Thursday’s qualifications. Moritz Kindl and Marian Klaffinger also triumphed with two wins - against pairs from Japan and USA. So a total of six men’s and four women’s duos from Austria will compete in Friday’s main draw action with thousands of fans expected to be rooting for their home heroes from the stands.
Schnetzer and Muellner opened the men’s qualifications on the centre court in Baden on Thursday, playing against the strong Czech team of David Lenc and Filip Habr. The strong defence of the Czech team and Habr’s incredible service led to the Austrians losing the first set by a disappointing 21-11. After a hard-fought 23-21 in the second set, the match was level, however. And the strong determination of the Austrian team led to a 15-11 win in the deciding set.
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In the penultimate qualifier on centre court, Schnetzer and Muellner competed against Jakob Molin and Linus Tholse from Sweden. After a fantastic start in the first set with Austria winning 21-10, the Swedes caught up in a more balanced second set, but in the end, Schnetzer and Muellner came out on top 22-20 and qualified for the main draw.
In the second Austrian qualifier on centre court, Kindl and Klaffinger triumphed against Japan’s Koichi Nishimura and Yu Koshikawa. The first set was quite close, with the Austrians winning 22-20. The calm manner of the young home team led to a 21-17 win in the second set.
Kindl and Klaffinger competed against USA’s Michael Boag and Skylar Del Sol in their second qualifier on centre court and surprised them with a 21-14 win in the first set. The US team managed to draw level after 21-18 in the second. In the third set, the Americans were thrown off course, as the Austrians managed to win 15-10, becoming the sixth Austrian team in the men’s main draw.
In addition to these two home duos, Marcio Guadie Ley and Arthur Diego Mariano Lanci of Brazil and Mads Rosager and Kristoffer Abell of Denmark were also successful in the qualifications in Baden.
Japan’s Satono Ishitsubo and Asami Shiba celebrate a point during women’s qualifications in Baden
Norway’s Emilie Olimstad and Janne Pedersen, Japan’s Satono Ishitsubo and Asami Shiba, Slovenia’s Ana Skarlovnik and Tjasa Kotnik and Germany’s Lisa-Sophie Kotzan and Leonie Klinke won two qualifications matches each on the women’s side and also advanced to main draw action in Baden.