Duda/Ana Patricia ready to defend U21 World Championship title

Nanjing, China, July 10, 2017 - Reigning U21 world champions Brazil’s Eduarda Santos Lisboa and Ana Patricia Silva Ramos will aim to defend their title at the 2017 FIVB U21 Beach Volleyball World Championships.

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The Brazilian pair are back in Nanjing after they took home the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games gold medal. Duda is a force to be reckoned with as the Brazilian currently ranks number four in the world with partner Agatha Bednarczuk, after an incredible 2017 season with four FIVB World Tour podiums including gold at the Rio four-star event in May.

Eduarda Santos Lisboa (left) and Ana Patricia Silva Ramos during the gold medal match at the 2016 U21 World Championships

Nadezda Makroguzova and Svetlana Kholomina from Russia took silver at the 2016 U21 World Championships in Lucerne and recently gold at the U22 European Continental Championships. Teaming up for age-group tournaments, Mukroguzova and Kholomina have also played multiple FIVB World Tour tournaments with other partners.

Russia's Svetlana Kholomina during the final of the 2016 U21 FIVB World Championships
Tina Graudina and Anastasija Kravcenoka from Latvia started playing together in 2013 and are regulars are their national tour. The pair won the U22 European Continental Championships in 2016 and finished just outside the final four in the 2017 edition.

Canada’s Megan McNamara and Nicole McNamara won bronze in the 2016 Lucerne U21 World Championships and silver at the 2014 Nanjing Youth Olympic Games, but have had limited experience on the world stage.

Canada's Nicole McNamara
The top three teams of the 2017 U21 Asian Championships are all present in Nanjing’s main draw. Thailand’s Pawarun Chanthawichai and Thatsarida Singchuea took top honours defeating Rieka Murakami and Hana Deguchi from Japan in the final.

Rieka Murakami plays in Nanjing with a different partner, Rinamary Kokubo who plays in her very first beach volleyball tournament.
Bronze at the U21 Asian Championships went to Maria Dwiningtyas and Vitria Rahayu from Indonesia in their only tournament or the year, defeating Vanuatu’s Loti Joe and Sherysyn Toko in the bronze medal match.
Loti Jo from Vanuatu 

Joe is no stranger on the FIVB World Tour, playing four tournaments this year with three top nine finishes alongside experienced partner Linline Matauatu.

Four teams represent China’s women in Nanjing, Shuting Cao/Jinjin Zeng and Jiaxi Wang/Jing Wang in the main draw and Jiaqi Geng/Leying Jiang and Xindie Jin/Jie Dong in the qualification tournament.

Men’s Tournament

Paul Burnett and Marcus Ferguson from Australia are the team with the most recent success, winning the Asian U21 Beach Volleyball Championships in March this year. Thailand’s Jatoopon Saenyoot and Marudet Buntem took silver in the final against Burnett/Ferguson and will also feature in Nanjing’s main draw.

Germany’s Julius Thole is one of the most experienced players in the draw, playing alongside his usual partner Lorenz Schümann, the pair currently rank number 21 in the world. Thole teams up with Lukas Pfretzschner for the U21’s in their first tournament together.

Germany’s Julius Thole

Switzerland’s Florian Breer and Yves Haussener will be a team to watch as the pair have already earned age-group success. The Swiss pair won the 2014 U19 World Championships in Acapulco at the age of 16 and then took silver at the same event in 2016.
Switzerland’s Florian Breer (left) and Yves Haussener

Mexico’s Josue Gaston Gaxiola Leyva has already stood on the U21 World Championships podium, taking silver at the 2016 edition in Lucerne. He joins a different partner for Nanjing, Jose Angel Cardenas Valdez.
Mexico’s Josue Gaston Gaxiola Leyva

Mees Blom and Ruben Penninga from the Netherlands will also be strong contenders in Nanjing. The team have already played two FIVB World Tour events this year in Kish Island and The Hague.

Latvia’s Kristaps Smits and Mihails Samoilovs will feature in Nanjing after claiming bronze at the 2016 U19 World Championships in Larnaka. Mihails is the younger brother of current world number one, Aleksandrs Samoilovs who won the 2005 U21 World Championships with former partner Martins Plavins.

Renato Andrew Lima de Carvalho from Brazil took gold in the U19 Larnaka World Championships last year and plays with Adrielson Dos Santos Silva for the first time in Nanjing.

China fields a total of four teams in Nanjing with the strongest contenders Chuanyong Liu and Tingyang Yan.

The tournament gets underway with the Moritz Fabian Kindl and Marian Klaffinger from Austria topping the qualification tournament ranking.

The men’s and women’s qualification matches will be played over one day on 11 July to qualify four teams each into the main draw pool play which will begin on 12 July.


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