2018-06-28 20:24:00 CET

Alison on top in first duel with Bruno

The Brazilians met for the first time after their split in Poland and the Mammoth had the upper hand

Alison and Andre celebrate their victory over Bruno and Pedro in Warsaw (Photocredit: FIVB)Alison and Andre celebrate their victory over Bruno and Pedro in Warsaw (Photocredit: FIVB)

It didn’t take long for Brazilian stars Alison Cerutti and Bruno Schmidt to have their first meeting as opponents after they announced the end of their partnership a month ago. In the four-star World Tour event in Warsaw, just their second tournament with new partners, the Rio 2016 Olympic champions were put face-to-face this Thursday and Alison came out on top.

The ‘Mammoth’ and 2017 world champion Andre Loyola prevailed over Bruno and Pedro Solberg in a nerve-wrecking three-set battle in the conclusion of pool play. The result took Alison and Andre straight to the Round of 16, while Bruno and Pedro will have to play an extra match to be among the best 16 teams in the event.

Alison and Andre dominated the first set and sealed their 21-17 win with the Mammoth blocking Bruno. In the second set, it was Bruno who came up on top as Pedro got a serve point to score 21-17 and make the game even. The tie-break was a hard-fought affair until the final point, when Andre, now a full-time defender, placed a shot out of Bruno’s reach to assure a 17-15 victory.

"Playing against Brazilian teams is always difficult and it got even harder against Bruno, who has been my partner for so many years, because of the respect we have for each other and for the history we wrote together," Alison said after the match. "But winning was the most important. We were very demanded in the two matches and got two positive results."

Alison and Bruno played together for four and half years and won a list of high-profile tournaments together, including the 2015 World Championships and the 2015 and 2016 World Tour Finals. On the World Tour, the duo played 41 tournaments, winning 12 golds, four silvers and three bronzes.

The event in Warsaw is just the second for the new teams in the World Tour. Last week, in Ostrava, Pedro and Bruno finished ninth while Alison and Andre were 17th.

We'll have a round-up of all how all teams faired when the competition draws to a close over the weekend.

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