17.07.2019 - Vienna
Both teams have just won silver medalists at one of the biggest tournaments of the season – and in two weeks’ time both will need to qualify for the main draw at the A1 Major Vienna. How’s your luck?
Alexander Brouwer and Robert Meeuwsen knew immediately after they had shaken their cowbells in Gstaad. The Dutch duo had finished 17th in three of their previous five tournaments prior to the Major in the Mountains, including at the World Championships.
It means the Olympic bronze medalists of 2016 will need to qualify for the main draw of a tournament for the first time in seven years. The last time? In 2012. That year the pair came through two rounds of qualification at the Klagenfurt Grand Slam and eventually finished ninth.
We messaged Rob about it. Fun fact: they would have had to have qualified for the first ever Major Series event in Poreč, in 2015. But they were handed a wildcard, he says, won seven of their eight matches and took gold. In the first ever Beach Major Series event. Wouldn’t be a bad place to repeat such a feat. History makers, those boys.
Qualification at the Danube Island will also involve Carol Solberg Salgado and Maria Antonelli. As Brazilians they are no strangers in having to qualify. They are no strangers to country quota. They are no strangers to losing in the country quota. Like they did on Tuesday. After their podium celebrations on Sunday, the duo immediately raced to the airport to catch a plane to Espinho for the four-star event. Before the tournament even began they were out. Losing 16-14 in the third set in the country quota to Talita and Taina. The life of a beach volleyball player…
So the entry list for Vienna is fixed – well almost. In the men’s competition there are main draw wildcards for Swiss pair Adrian Heidrich and Mirco Gerson and young Austrians Martin Ermacora and Moritz Pristauz.
Fighting in the quali alongside Brouwer/Meeuwsen are Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Janis Smedins of Latvia and Canadian pairs Pedlow/Schachter and Saxton/O’Gorman.
There will still be one spot for an Austrian team to make it into the qualification, but that will be decided by the Austrian federation. So, for now, hold your breath on who that team will be.
On the women’s side twin sisters Nadine and Teresa Strauss have been handed a wildcard, while joining Maria and Carol in qualification are German duos Ludwig/Kozuch and Bieneck/Schneider. Yep, two of Germany’s top teams in the quali. One of them a reigning Olympic champ.
This is gonna be good. See you at the Island!