Espinho, Portugal, July 5, 2018 – Women’s main draw action and men’s qualifications are all set to get underway on the Atlantic coast beach of Espinho at the four-star stop on the 2018 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour to be held there through Sunday.
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For the pool stage of the main draw, the teams are divided into eight pools of four pairs each. Within each pool two matches will be played first, with the two winners securing their spots in the single elimination phase and playing each other for a direct ticket to the second elimination round. The two losers will also face each other in the survival battles to stay in contention. All these matches in the women’s tournament are scheduled for Thursday.
Centre court action will open at 08:00 local time with a Pool A encounter between top-seeded Canadians Melissa Humana-Paredes and Sarah Pavan and Brazilian team of reigning Youth Olympic champ Ana Patricia Silva Ramos and former U21 World Championship silver medallist Rebecca Cavalcanti Barbosa Silva.
Next on centre court, at 08:50, last week’s gold medallists from the Warsaw four-star, third-seeded Canadians Heather Bansley and Brandie Wilkerson, will take on French wild cards Lezana Placette and Alexia Richard. Fifth-seeded Australians Taliqua Clancy and Mariafe Artacho will then face Lithuania’s Ieva Dumbauskaite, reigning snow volleyball European champion, and Urte Andriukaityte.
At 10:30 it will be time for the home crowd to cheer on their own, the only Portuguese duo in the women’s main draw Gabriela Coelho and Anessa Paquete. They will measure up to Thailand’s Varapatsorn Radarong and Tanarattha Udomchavee in a Pool H encounter.
With plenty of women’s pool play excitement on the other three competition courts as well, this will complete the first half of the pool phase. The second half, with the winners’ and the losers’ matches will take place later on Thursday.
Before that, the men’s first round of qualifications will take over the venue. The two Portuguese teams participating, Luis Gomes and Jose Silva and wild cards Luis Freitas and Tiago Pereira, will take on the centre court for their first round matches at 12:20 and 13:10 local time, respectively.
Live streaming of centre court matches at Espinho is available on Portuguese Volleyball Federation’s online TV channel