Long Beach, California, USA, August 28, 2016 – Turning the tables on a old home-country friendly ‘nemisis’, Germany’s Julia Sude/Chantal Laboureur toppled compatriots Katrin Holtwick/Ilka Semmler Sunday to win the bronze medal at the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball featuring the $800,000 FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam in Los Angeles, Calif. Quick links - Long BeachLong Beach Grand Slam websiteQualification - MenQualification - WomenMain draw - MenMain draw - Women
The gold medal match later Sunday afternoon will feature USA’s top-seeded Olympians Kerri Walsh Jennings/April Ross meeting Spain’s seventh-seeded Olympians Liliana Fernandez/Elsa Baquerizo.
The 2016 FIVB World Tour regular season is concluding in the United States with the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball being held through Sunday on a colorful purpose-built venue at Alamitos Beach adjacent to Marina Green Park on East Shoreline Drive. The bronze and gold medal matches and awarding ceremonies for each gender are being played Sunday.
Germany’s Sude/Laboreur defeated their veteran German opponents Holtwick/Semmler in straight sets, 21-16, 21-17 in 38 minutes on the sun-drenched stadium court in front of an enthusiastic near capacity crowd on the shores of Alamitos Bay.A pumped Chantal Laboureur celebrates
While the cornerstone of the beach volleyball celebration is the $800,000 FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam (regular season finale of the 2016 FIVB World Tour), the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball encompasses a wide variety of additional elements . Also part of the beach festival has been live entertainment, a special celebrity center court match, an expansive vendor’s village, multiple open, junior and youth beach volleyball tournaments and the very special legends of the game tribute dinner all at the event venue. For complete details regarding the entire ASICS WSOBV lineup of events and activities including premium seating tickets, visit the event website at www.wsobv.com.FIVB LONG BEACH GRAND SLAM PURSE/POINTS
The gold medal teams at the FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam will split $57,000 and 800 points, the silver $43,000 and 720 points, the bronze $32,000 and 640 points and fourth place $24,000 and 560 points.BRONZE MEDAL REVIEW
In the all-German battle for the bronze medal, Germany’s fifth-seeded Sude/Laboureur lined up against a team they are very familiar with in Germany’s 13th-seeded Holtwick/ Semmler. With both talented teams missing out on the 2016 Olympics in their country very strong with veteran beach players, the first set saw Germany’s Sude/Laboureur use an early 6-0 run to take a 7-3 lead and later had a 5-1 run capped off by consecutive blocks by Sude.
In the second set, Sude/Laboureur pulled ahead in a tight set 18-13 when Holtwick/Semmler ran off four straight points to close to 17-18. After calling a time out, Germany’s Sude/Laboureur scored three straight points to end the set and win the match.
Statistically in the match, Sude had 13 kills, three blocks and once ace serve while her teammate Laboureur had 16 kills, nine digs and two ace serves.
For Germany’s Holtwick/Semmler statistically, Hotlwick had seven kills, 12 digs and two ace serves while Semmler contributed 13 kills and one ace serve.Germany's Katrin Holtwick digs
For the match, Germany’s Sude/Laboureur had just three hitting errors while Germany’s Holtwick/Semmler had eight.
It was be the fifth meeting between the two teams and Germany’s Sude/Laboureur closed the game with Holtwick/Semmler to 2-3 in their series history which had seen Holtwick/Semmler win the last three meetings after Sude/Laboureur won the first meeting between the two compatriot teams at the FIVB Moscow Grand Slam in 2015.
This was the seventh final four appearance for Germany’s Sude/Laboureur in 39 career FIVB World Tour events as a team. They have one gold medal, three silver medals, one bronze medal and two four place finishes. Their gold medal came this season at the Swatch FIVB Porec Major in Croatia. Individually, this was the 64th career FIVB World Tour event for Laboureur and 99th for Sude.
For Germany’s Holtwick/Semmler, this was their 23rd final four in 116 career FIVB World Tour events as a team. They have two gold medals, five silver medals, nine bronze medals and six fourth place finishes. Individually, this was the 126th career FIVB World Tour event and 125th for Semmler.THEY SAID IT
Following earning their first FIVB World Tour bronze medal, both German’s Sude and Laboureur had plenty to say.
Sude said, “We didn’t expect this result. Our goal was to be fifth in this tournament and to qualify for Toronto for the Swatch FIVB World Tour Finals. Yesterday we knew already that we qualified and today, after the tough loss to Kerri and April (USA’s Walsh Jennings/Ross), we wanted to make it better and get on the podium.”
“It’s always motivation to play against another German team, but no matter which team is on the other side, we wanted to win this match and we have another fancy story maybe. The last training session we had in Manhattan Beach was with Kerri and April and with the Spanish girls (Lili/Elsa) so now all the three of these teams are on the podium in Long Beach. We had a very clear game plan and we served much better than we did in the past matches against them”
Laboureur added, “We’re so happy about this because it was such a big fight in Germany. We had four teams that had enough points to go to Toronto and so we’re happy we finally made it. We’ll look back at the end of the season because we still have some important tournaments are waiting for us but we are happy what we have achieved so far. I think we can be proud, our team is amazing, we have good coaches and a mental coach also this year.”MAKING HISTORY
While this is the fourth consecutive year that the FIVB World Tour has stopped in Long Beach, Calif., the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball featuring the $800,000 FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam is the 22nd men’s event of the season and 19th women’s event on the 2016 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour that started with three events at the end of 2015.ON THE HORIZON
Following the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, there are two more events scheduled on the 2016 FIVB World Tour calendar. First event scheduled is in the United States--the ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball at the $800,000 FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam (Aug. 23-28) and the Swatch FIVB World Tour Finals (Sept. 13-18, Toronto, Canada). The Swatch FIVB World Tour Finals, with $100,000 going to each winning team, will feature the top eight point leaders in each gender from the current FIVB World Tour plus four wild card teams in each gender.GROWING HISTORY
The ASICS World Series of Beach Volleyball at the $800,000 FIVB Long Beach Grand Slam in the United States is the 350th men’s tournament since the FIVB began play in 1987 and the 311th FIVB women’s tournament since their competition started in 1992.