After a wet and windy visit to Skegness last month, the 2016 Volleyball England Beach Tour entered its third date this weekend in Weymouth, where some unpredictable results in the senior competitions lead to unlikely winners.
In the early stages of the men’s and women’s competitions, many of the results were as expected, but for an upset caused by Martin Kaufer and Davide Grandolfo in the second round to beat second-seed Renato Silva and Aldo Rendon Peiro 2-0. In an impressive display from Anaya Evans and Zoe Baxter, they also upset Antonella Palmese and Danae Filioti 2-1.
Both Kaufer/Grandolfo and Evans/Baxter progressed into the third round but bowed out to Mark Garcia-Kidd/Andrew Clayton and Petra Jurikova/Shauna Miedzybroodzki respectively. But the third round was also the round for three set thrillers, with both the top seeds being defeated.
In the women’s competition, 2015 VEBT Champions Mel Coutts and Lynne Beattie were taken the distance by Catherine Thornton and Alexandra Vajdova, with each set being a close call (24-26, 21-19, 11-15). Likewise on the men’s side, top seed team Harry Jones and Robert Poole were taken to three sets by Russell Watson and Phil Smith. Jones/Poole took the first set 21-18, but their opposition refused to be beaten, winning the following sets 21-14, 15-8.
As things heated up in the quarterfinals, Seain Cook and Robin Miedzybrodzki battled it out against Issa Batrane and Ryan Poole. In a close first set, Cook/Miedzybrodzki took the lead by a 21-19 set score. Batrane/Poole resisted in the second set, but the opposition pushed on for a place in the semis 21-18, 15-7 (2-1).
In the women’s quarterfinals, Katja Gless and Eva Holt beat Jurikova/Miedzybrodzki 2-1 and Jessica Grimson and Lizzie Smith progressed to the next stage, defeating Evans/Baxter 21-19, 21-18.
Both Cook/Miedzybrodzki and Gless/Holt progressed beyond the semi-finals, joined by Watson/Smith in the men’s competition and Thornton/Vajdova in the women’s final.
The men’s final was all about the underdog on Sunday, as it was eighth seed up against 13th. A close match throughout, Watson/Smith narrowly secured the first set 21-19. Cook/Miedzybrodzki came closer in the second set, but in a point for point battle towards the end, Watson/Smith came out Champions 23-21 (2-0).
An even closer battle in the women’s tournament, VEBT Great Yarmouth runners up Gless/Holt comfortably took the first set 21-13. Eighth seed Thornton/Vajodova refused to go down without a fight though, narrowly pulling back to level in the second set 23-21. In the deciding third set, Gless/Holt claimed the title 11-15.
In the Junior Volleyball England Beach tour, Javier and Joaquin Bello secured their third JVEBT title, remaining unbeaten in the 2016 junior competition. Yasmin Kaashoek and Zoe Baxter also claimed victory in the girls’ competition. Elsewhere in the division 2 competition, Michael Constantinou and Jonathan Castañeda won to round up a great weekend of beach volleyball in Dorset.
1,695 total views, 1 views today