Moscow, Russia, August 14, 2019 - When Kerri Walsh Jennings takes to the sand here on Thursday during the opening pool play rounds in Moscow, she will be celebrating her birthday at an FIVB-sanctioned beach volleyball event for the fourth time.
The only four-time Olympic and World Championship medal winner, Walsh Jennings turns 41 as she and Brooke Sweat compete in Pool G at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Moscow event where the Americans will be participating in the same group with pairs from the United States, Germany and Russia.
With 722 career international victories in 855 matches (84.4 winning percentage), Walsh Jennings ranks sixth all-time in FIVB wins behind Brazilians Emanuel Rego (1,214), Ricardo Santos (1,019), Larissa Franca (798), Talita Antunes (774) and Juliana Felisberta (749).
Walsh Jennings (right) in action in Moscow
Two of Walsh Jennings’ previous three FIVB appearances on her August 15 birthday have come at Olympics in 2004 at Athens and 2008 in Beijing where she and Misty May-Treanor posted Summer Games wins over pairs from Japan and Belgium, respectively. In 2016, Walsh Jennings celebrated her birthday on Copacabana two days before she and April Ross claimed the bronze medal at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
Walsh Jennings' other August 15 appearance at an FIVB event was in 2012 in Poland where she and Nicole Branagh won a pair of Stare Jablonki pool play matches. A week earlier in 2012, Walsh Jennings teamed with May-Treanor to win the pair’s third Olympic gold medal at the London Summer Games.
Of the six winningest individuals in FIVB beach volleyball history, only Emanuel, Talita and Juliana have played in World Tour events on their birthday. Talita (August 29) has posted a 6-1 match mark in four birthday appearances with one gold medal win, Juliana (July 22) split two games on her birthday with one gold medal. Emanuel (April 15) won two matches once on his birthday.