04.12.2023 - Nuvali, Philippines
Over the course of the weekend, Seidl/Pristauz gained their third medal on the Beach Pro Tour and their second gold on the world-level. Just six weeks ago the duo, which formed at the beginning of this year’s beach volleyball season, took home gold in Goa. They also claimed the bronze medal in La Paz during their debut as a team back in March. On a national level, the duo became the new Austrian champions back in September. In Nuvali, they went through the tournament almost entirely undefeated, dropping only one set in the quarterfinals against Pedrosa/Campos (15-21, 21-17, 15-10). In the final match, they defeated the Australian duo Hodges/Schubert 2:0 (21-18, 21-16), who can add the silver medal to their colorful 2023 collection next to their Haikou bronze and Jurmala gold.
The bronze medal in Nivalu went to Stankevičius/Knašas. This is the furthest the Lithuanian duo has ever gotten in a beach volleyball tournament on this level. In the quarterfinals, they managed to defeat the experienced Spaniards Pablo Herrera, an Olympic silver medalist and two-times European champion, and Adrian Gavira, a three-time Olympian, in a tie-breaker. This win must have come especially satisfying after Herrera/Gavira had defeated the young Lithuanians in a tie-breaker in Haikou not too long ago. In the bronze medal match, they defeated the English Bello-brothers 2:1 (23-21, 17-21, 15-10).
In the women’s tournament, the gold medal went to Latvian beach stars Anastasija Samoilova and Tina Graudina. Though the duo has already gathered an impressive amount of medals on a European level, including gold at the European Championships 2019 and 2022, as well as a bronze in Jurmala back in March, this is their first gold in a world-level tournament. They didn’t drop a single set in Nuvali, despite Tina sustaining a wound during the quarterfinals; a ball had hit her face, shattering her sunglasses, and she had to wear a small bandage during the semifinals and finals. However, this didn’t stop the duo from beating the Spanish Álvarez/Moreno in a 2:0 (21-14, 21-18). The young Spanish players still had reason to celebrate, as this was their first silver medal on the Beach Pro Tour. They had also won silver at A1 CEV EuroBeachVolley back in August in Vienna, where they had beaten the Latvian duo in the Round of 16. In the bronze medal match, Brazilians Tainá/Victoria were victorious against the French Placette/Richard. This is their fourth medal on the Beach Pro Tour after another bronze in Haikou and La Paz as well as a silver medal in Saquarema.
After the tournament, the Latvians immediately made their way to the Doha Finals, where, this week, they will be competing in the last tournament of the 2023 World Tour season.