Warsaw, Poland, June 12, 2019 – A thrilling second qualification round full of spectacular three-setters and upsets produced the eight teams to advance to the men’s main draw at the four-star Warsaw stop on the 2019 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour. Among them, Switzerland’s Quentin Metral & Yves Haussener dropped the biggest sensation of the day by upsetting top-seeded Brazilians Andre Loyola Stein & George Souto Maior Wanderley in straight sets.
Metral & Haussener, seeded 17th in the qualification bracket, went through a tough first round match, where they had to come back from losing the first set against 16th-seeded Nils Ehlers & Lars Flueggen and pull off a 2-1 (17-21, 21-12, 15-8) victory. In the deciding round, the Swiss pair simply outplayed reigning world champion Andre and his teammate George on the way to a 2-0 (23-21, 21-18) win.
“I can’t believe it!” exclaimed an elated Quentin Metral immediately after the match. “In the second set, it was like 15-11 to them and then we just had patience, played our game and we’re just happy now. We want to be ready for the Gstaad Major at home and we want to play every game like this one.”
“Yes, I thought maybe we’d go for a decider, but then we came step by step and we knew that the tension was going to be on their side, because we had won the first set. I think that helped a lot,” Yves Haussener added. “I don’t know how, but we just won. I am just happy to be in the main draw and want to go for more...”
Austria’s Kunert & Muellner were the lowest ranked team to emerge from Wednesday’s qualifications with a spot in the main draw
Austria’s Thomas Kunert & Daniel Muellner, seeded 25th among the 28 teams participating in the qualifications, were actually the lowest ranked team to move on to the main draw on Thursday. They started their day with a 2-0 (21-17, 21-19) win over eighth-seeded Jiaxin Wu & Likejiang Ha of China, and went on to master a 2-1 (16-21, 21-18, 18-16) turnaround against ninth-seeded Cole Durant & Damien Schumann of Australia.
21st-seeded Germans Max Betzien & Jonathan Erdmann also managed a straight-set victory in the first round – 2-0 (21-16, 21-12) over Cuba’s Sergio Reynaldo Gonzalez Bayard & Luis Enrique Reyes Rodriguez, seeded 12th – and a tie-breaker upset in the second – 2-1 (21-16, 20-22, 15-11) over fifth-seeded Americans Stafford Slick & William Allen.
Four more three-setters were played in the deciding qualification round, with Argentina’s Julian Amado Azaad & Nicolas Capogrosso (seed #14) upsetting third-seeded Peng Gao & Yang Li of China, Norway’s Mathias Berntsen & Hendrik Nikolai Mol (#13) coming back from a set down against fourth-seeded Martin Ermacora & Moritz Pristauz of Austria, Slovenia’s Nejc Zemljak & Jan Pokersnik (#11) surprising sixth-seeded Dutchmen Christiaan Varenhorst & Steven van de Velde, and Mexico’s Lombardo Ontiveros & Juan Virgen (#7) turning things around against Australia’s Christopher McHugh & Zachery Schubert (#10).
Second-seeded Adrian Heidrich & Mirco Gerson of Switzerland were, in fact, the only top-six team to go through the qualification process successfully.