Samsun, Turkey, July 27, 2018 – Eight teams secured their spots in the single elimination phase of the women’s main draw at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Samsun event by winning their first pool matches on Friday, with all three participating pairs from the Czech Republic among the winning teams.
In addition to the three Czech duos, teams from Austria, Denmark, Italy, the Netherlands and Sweden made a victorious start of their pool play campaign at the TVF Samsun Beach Volleyball Centre.
Top-seeded Eva Freiberger and Valerie Teufl of Austria had few issues to deal with against Turkey’s Belinay Sari and Basak Doner and won 2-0 (21-4, 21-6). "We are happy to win our first match of the tournament. We showed a good performance today," Teufl said. In the other Pool A match, Czechia’s Nicole Dostalova and Anna Komarkova mastered a solid 2-0 (21-12, 21-11) win over Hungary’s Eszter Lutter and Szandra Szombathelyi.
The second-seeded team, Karolina Rehackova and Marie-Sara Stochlova of the Czech Republic, did not have any problems against their Turkish opponents either. They cruised to a speedy 2-0 (21-9, 21-6) shutout of wild cards Aysu Ceylan and Kamuran Oyku Keskin. In the only three-setter of the day, Julia Wouters and Pleun Ypma of the Netherlands claimed a 2-1 (21-14, 17-21, 15-13) victory over Slovenia’s Nina Lovsin and Tjasa Kotnik to advance to the Pool B final. “It was a tough game. There were many ups and downs in our game. Therefore, we are happy that we won in the end,” Wouters said.
The third Czech pair, Sara Olivova and Tereza Pluharova, seeded third in the main draw, managed a 2-0 (21-15, 21-12) victory over Turkey’s Ebru Karayilan and Burcu Atasoy and will be facing Simone Marie Okholm Hansen and Helle Sondergard in the Pool C winners’ match on Saturday. The Danish duo hammered out a 2-0 (21-6, 21-11) win over South Africa’s Simone Sittig and Luciana Pierangeli.
Carolina Ferraris and Francesca Michieletto were the lowest ranked team to score a victory on Friday. The 13th-seeded Italians delivered an impressive 2-0 (24-22, 21-9) upset of fourth-seeded home favourites Merve Celebi and Muge Ocakci in Pool D. Sweden’s Camilla Nilsson and Sofia Ogren closed the first competition day with a 2-0 (22-20, 21-18) victory over Poland’s Marta Lodej and Marta Duda.
“It is always difficult to play the home team in front of the home fans. At the beginning of the match, we were a bit nervous, but we won the first set 24-22. In the second, we played very well and showed a good performance, especially in defence, winning the game and continuing our winning streak,” said Ferraris.
On Saturday, the two first-leg winners of each pool will face each other in a quest to advance straight to the quarterfinals. The two losers will also play each other in survival battles for the last remaining spots in the first round of elimination.