Olympic beach volleyball: Powerhouses enter knock-out stage
London, July 31 (IANS) Brazil's top-seeded pair of Larissa Franca and Juliana Felisberta Da Silva secured a second straight win for a top 16 berth in the women's beach volleyball event of the London Olympics.
The Brazil duo overpowered Germany's 12th-seeds Katrin Holtwick and Ilka Semmler 21-18, 21-13 in 42 minutes to push the Germans to 1-1 in pool play Monday, Xinhua reports.
Juliana had one ace, nine kills, two blocks and six digs and Larissa was credited with one ace, 14 kills and 21 digs. For Germany, Holtwick had two aces, 10 kills and 13 digs while Semmler had 10 kills, three blocks and four digs.
Double Olympic Champion Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh from the United States also booked a place in the knockout stage with a 21-14, 21-19 victory over Marketa Slukova and Kristyna Kolocova of Czech Republic.
Earlier Monday, Beijing Olympic bronze medallists Xue Chen and Zhang Xi hammered Simone Kuhn and Nadine Zumkehr of Switzerland in three sets to gain their first win.
Coming off a shocking 1-2 loss to Russians Anastasia Vasina and Anna Vozakova in the opener Saturday, the Chinese duo, second seed of the tournament, clawed back their hope to advance into the last 16 with a 21-19, 16-21, 15-8 victory.
Zhang Xi scored five of China's last six points to help them remain in the competition with three points in hand.
In the men's event, Germany's third-seeds Julius Brink and Jonas Reckermann, the 2009 FIVB World Champions who have missed much of this season with Reckermann's shoulder injury, overcame a slow start and wore down China's 10th-seeds Wu Penggen and Xu Linyin 13-21, 21-19, 15-8 in a 52-minute match. While Brink and Reckermann is 2-0 to enter the knockout stage, Wu and Xu have slipped to 0-2.
Latvia's Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Ruslans Sorokins also secured a place in the knockout stages defeating South African pair Grant Goldschmidt and Freedom Chiya 21-13, 21-10.
The tandems in London have been split equally into six pools, with the top two advancing to the knockout phase that begins August 3 along with the two best third-placed teams. The remaining four teams will then compete in lucky loser playoff matches to determine which pairs will fill the final two places.
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