Haiyang, China, July 18, 2018 – Canada’s Cameron Wheelan and Jake MacNeil opened the qualification round at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Haiyang Open on Wednesday with a surprise 2-0 (21-18, 21-12) win over China’s Chuanyong Liu/Ming Li.
The Canadians were off to a good start in Haiyang in front of a big crowd.
“It was really hot for first thing in the morning,” MacNeil said. “We were both surprised when we walked on to centre court for warm-up and there were tons of fans in the stands, which was awesome to see. We definitely don’t usually get that kind of crowd, especially on the first day.
“It’s also great to experience their great volleyball knowledge. The fans were all cheering for very good rallies, and good volleyball digs and blocks. It’s fun to play in front of that kind of crowd.”
The North American team had a good stint from the service line, but praised their rivals for the challenge.
“They were a talented, young team especially in the first set,” Wheelan said. “Luckily, my partner had an amazing day. He was serving unbelievably well from the end line.”Quick links - Beach volleyball:
FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour - Haiyang
However, their compatriots Liam Kopp/William Hoey were not as fortunate as the United States’ Adam Roberts/Troy Field eliminated the second Canadian team in the qualifiers in straight sets 2-0 (22-20, 22-20).
In other matches, China’s Wang Yangwei/Lei Li defeated Hong Kong’s Pui Lam Wong/Tsz Ho Kelvin Lau 2-0 (21-13, 21-14), while France’s Romain Di Giantomasso/Jeremy Silvestre prevailed against Ivan Golovin/Taras Myskiv 2-0 (21-13, 23-21).
The first matches in the Haiyang Open main draw take place on Thursday, starting at 8.00 local time. Click here
for the match schedule and results.