MCHUGH AND BURNETT UPSET RIO OLYMPIC CHAMPION AT VOLLEYBALL WORLD BEACH PRO TOUR CHALLENGE IN MEXICO
Chris McHugh and Paul Burnett have stunned their competition, powering through to the quarterfinals at the Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour Challenge in Tlaxcala, Mexico.
The Aussie pair were dominant in their second pool match against Mexico, and Round of 16 match against Brazil, making their way through without dropping a set.
In only their second international tournament as a pair, Commonwealth Games gold medalist and Tokyo Olympic McHugh said he couldn’t be happier with the performances the duo have put together.
“It was great to play on centre court against the home team Mexico, Gaxiola and Rubio are Tokyo Olympians so we knew it was going to be a tough match,” McHugh said.
“It was a very physical game, but it was good to get the win and make our way through to the next round.
“We had a strong start, and perhaps were a little bit fitter than Mexico, but we just were able to create more opportunities, and back it up with a solid side out game.
“I was really pleased with the performance we put together against Mexico,” he said.
In their second match of the day, the Aussies had Rio Olympic champion Alison Cerutti, and his partner Gustavo Carvalhaes of Brazil standing in their way of a quarterfinals spot.
But McHugh and Burnett were determined, and managed to upset the fifth seeds in straight sets – 2:0 (21-13, 21-16).
“Paul played so well tonight, it’s hard to believe we just beat one of the Olympic champions from Rio 2016,” McHugh said.
“Brazil played great, but we sided out really well and couldn’t be happier that we’re going into the quarterfinals tomorrow,” he said.
With a position in the semi finals up for grabs, McHugh and Burnett will now face Polish pair Bryl and Losiak in tomorrow’s quarterfinals.
“Poland are a great team, they’re both Olympians so we know it’s going to be a tough game,” McHugh said.
“But we’re really looking forward to it and we’ll take some confidence from today’s games,” he said.
COMPETITION SCHEDULE – QUARTERFINALS
McHugh/Burnett (AUS) v Bryl/Losiak (POL) | Sunday 20 March (time TBC)
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