Aussie rising stars book spot in main draw at Beach Pro Tour Torquay Elite 16
The main draw has been determined for the Beach Pro Tour Torquay Elite 16, after an exciting qualification day saw the final four men’s and women’s teams decided.
Locals were treated to a thrilling three-set battle between Aussie rising stars Georgia Johnson and Jasmine Fleming and China’s Lingdi Zhu and Fan Wang in the second last match of the day.
The Queenslanders were stoked to book their first ever spot in the Main Draw of the Elite 16 after taking a 2-1 (12-21; 21-17; 17-15) win.
Georgia Johnson said: “We are very happy with the way we fought in that game, trying to put up a massive fight. They really took care of us in the first set, but luckily we stuck to our strategy and played the long game. We got it done in the end, in overtime in the third set. It’s huge having the crowd here cheering for us. It makes a huge difference.”
Jasmine Fleming said: “We played them in the Challenge event, we got the win there, but we knew it was going to be a tough one. We really had to stick to our game plan, trust the process and we got there. We knew that we could make the points that we needed. In the Elite 16, you’ve got so many top level teams coming here. We want to be at that level one day and it’s an epic opportunity to play them in front of our home fans.”
The pool matches for the Beach Pro Tour Torquay Elite 16 get underway on Wednesday 30 November.
For the full draw – click here.
AUSSIES IN ACTION
10:00am – McHugh & Burnett (AUS) vs Metral & Haussener (SUI)
11:00am – Stevens & Laird (AUS) vs Sude & Schneider (GER)
1:00pm – Hodges & Schubert (AUS) vs Elazar & Ohana (ISR)
3:00pm – Johnson & Fleming (AUS) vs X. Y. Xia & M.M. Lin (CHN)
6:00pm – Carracher & Nicolaidis (AUS) vs Berntsen & Mol, H (NOR)
7:00pm – McHugh & Burnett (AUS) vs Lotman & Evans (USA)
8:00pm – Clancy & Artacho del Solar (AUS) vs Akiko & Yurika (JPN)
Elite 16 Preview
Olympic silver medalists Taliqua Clancy and Mariafe Artacho del Solar hold the top seed in the women’s main draw and will take to the court on Wednesday at 8pm AEDT, facing Japan (Akiko Hasegawa and Yurika Sakaguchi) in their first pool match. The other Australian teams in the women’s main draw are Alisha Stevens and Nicole Laird, who will start their campaign on Wednesday against Julia Sude and Isabel Schneider of Germany, and Georgia Johnson with Jasmine Fleming, who will face the Chinese team of Xinyi Xia and MeiMei Lin after successfully coming through the qualification round.
The Aussies’ main rivals will be Sara Hughes and Kelly Cheng of team USA, who proved to be in remarkable form by taking the Torquay Challenge title in dominant fashion last week. They are the only team in the top four to have already competed in Torquay and are seeded at no.2 before Americans Kristen Nuss and Taryn Kloth, and the German paid of Sude/Schneider.
In the men’s main draw, Torquay Challenge bronze medalists Chris McHugh and Paul Burnett hold the top seed, while the other Aussie pairs of Thomas Hodges and Zachery Schubert and Izac Carracher with Mark Nicolaidis are also included in the main draw.
Daniele Lupo with Enrico Rossi and Adrian Carambula with Alex Ranghieri will compete again in Torquay after taking gold and silver for Italy in the Challenge. They are seeded just behind the Suisse team of Marco Krattiger and Florian Breer and the Norwegian team of Mathias Berntsen with Hendrik Nikolai Mol, to make up an exciting men’s top five.
Pool matches are scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday with competitors divided into four groups of four teams each. Each team will play three pool matches, with the top two teams from each group to advance to the quarter finals scheduled on Friday morning and followed by the semi finals later in the day.
The Beach Pro Tour Elite 16 Finals will take place on Saturday from 5pm onwards to wrap up the second event of the Great Ocean Road Beach Volleyfest.
All the matches played on centre court will be streamed live exclusively on Kayo Freebies (kayosports.com.au/freebies). Tickets are still available at beachvolleyfest.com.au
For the full results of the Torquay Elite 16 event, head over to the Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour website.