Van Steenis/Penninga sweep home duo for Qinzhou Open men’s Main Draw
Tom van Steenis and Ruben Penninga of the Netherlands celebrate a point
Playing together for the second tournament, the fourth seeds in the qualification tournament beat Wang/Yan 2-0 (21-19, 21-16) in 26 minutes.
“It’s our second tournament together, it’s incredible,” said Penninga. “China is so different from our country. We have jet lag and we have only four days’ training, so I am really happy that we played in the centre court against a home team. It’s amazing.”
“It’s a pretty good experience, especially in these hard conditions,” Steenis echoed. “I mean it’s very hot out there, it’s very tough to play, it made us very proud to get this win.”
Steenis and Penninga, who have previously played together in indoor events, were very glad to extend their cooperation and friendship to beach volleyball.
“I have known Tom for a really long time, because we also played indoor volleyball together,” said Penninga. “We have always been good friends and we put it together on the court, it’s amazing,” Steenis added.
Later on Wednesday, Quentin Metral and Simon Hagenbuch of Switzerland rallied from one set down to beat New Zealand’s Sonny Hirini and Sam O’Dea 2-1 (18-21, 21-14, 15-10) for a berth in the Main Draw.
“The first set was difficult. I think we played a good side-out game, but we had no defense and no block. After that we talked to each other to adapt to the team together and then we had some defense, some block and some good serve and we won the second set,” said Metral. “The third set was a really, really good set. At the end we were a bit nervous, but we won.”
“We always talked a lot during the game. We changed our tactic a little bit and it worked really good,” said Hagenbuch.
Six other qualifying teams including three from Japan also booked their berths in the men’s Main Draw after Wednesday’s action.
The event in Qinzhou, China is the second stop in a new season of the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour, following the men’s-only tournament in Montpellier, France at the beginning of September. It will be followed by tournaments in Aalsmeer, Netherlands from October 25 to 29 and in Sydney, Australia from November 22 to 26.
Quick links - Beach volleyball:
FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour - Qinzhou
FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour
FIVB.com - Beach Volleyball
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