Beach: Pedlow and O’Gorman finish ninth at Fuzhou Open
April 25, 2014: Canada’s Grant O’Gorman and Sam Pedlow finished a career-best ninth at the Fuzhou Open in China, which kicked off the 2014 FIVB beach volleyball international competition calendar this week (April 22 to 27).
Ranked 24th in the tournament, Pedlow (Scarborough, ON) and O’Gorman (Barrie, ON) won their pool. They defeated Wu Jiaxin-Li of China, who were ranked ninth, and Russians Semenov-Krasilnikov (ranked eighth) and Prokopiev-Goncharov RUS (25).
"Our goal for this tournament was to build off the momentum we had established in the 2013 season," explained Pedlow. "We knew coming into the event it would be a challenge to qualify and move deep into the event, but our off-season training served us well and we were able to play some incredible volleyball this early in the season. A ninth-place finish is a great way to start!"
In round two play, they were beaten by Kovatsch and Kissling of Switzerland.
Josh Binstock and Sam Schachter, both of Richmond Hill, Ontario, finished 25th.
Jamie Broder (Victoria, BC) and Kristina Valjas (Toronto, ON) finished 25th overall. Sharon, Ontario’s Caleigh Whitaker and Kacie MacTavish did not move past the qualification round at Fuzhou.
In addition to the FIVB Fuzhou Open, two other stops are scheduled in China in 2014 on the FIVB international schedule: the FIVB Shanghai Grand Slam (April 29 to May 4) and the FIVB Xiamen Open (October 7 to 12). All three will be double-gender events.
The 2014 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour will include 10 Grand Slam events, a new FIVB Grand Slam Final and 11 FIVB Beach Volleyball Open events.
Implemented in 2013, the format of all the FIVB Beach Volleyball international tournaments – whether FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships, FIVB Beach Volleyball Grand Slam or FIVB Beach Volleyball Open – are the same, featuring pool play followed by single elimination knockout rounds.
The 2014-2016 FIVB Beach Volleyball Continental Cup also returns this year as it starts its portion of the qualification process for the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games.
Although all Canadian teams have completed their matches at Fuzhou, competition continues with the final rounds through to Sunday.