2018-09-03 11:28:00 CEST
It was a busy weekend of beach volleyball across Europe (and America)!
On a weekend when qualification for the Olympics began on the FIVB World Tour, a number of the beach elite took to the sand in tournaments around Europe and the US.
National titles were claimed in Germany, Italy, Spain and Poland with familiar faces of the Beach Major Series topping the podium.
In Germany, Hamburg Finals heroes Clemens Wickler and Julian Thole continued the impressive form that has carried them into the top 10 of a host of World Tour events by taking their national title. The young duo edged a dramatic final against Philipp Arne Bergmann and Yannick Harms 17-21, 21-12, 17-15 to take gold.
In the women’s tournament the top prize went to Isabel Schneider and Victoria Bieneck after a straight sets victory over Sandra Ittlinger and Kim Behrens, 21-16, 21-18.
1,800 Likes, 4 Comments - Deutscher Volleyball-Verband (@team_germany_volleyball) on Instagram: "Verdiente Sieger einer wieder einmal geilen Beach-DM😍 #TechnikerBeachTour #ranBeach | 📸 @joernjoern"
In Italy, Marco Caminati and Enrico Rossi won the men’s gold and Viktoria Orsi Toth and Marta Menegatti triumphed in the women’s tournament. In Spain, Pablo Herrera and Adrian Gavira came out on top while the women's title went the way of Paula Soria and Belén Carro.
The silver and bronze medalists from the Hamburg Finals went head-to-head in a real epic in the Polish finals. Piotr Kantor and Bartosz Losiak beat Grzegorz Fijalek and Michal Bryl in a three-set thriller (23-21, 20-22, 15-9) to win gold. In the women’s event, Katarzyna Kociołek and Kinga Kołosińska took top spot, winning 22-20, 21-13 against Kingi Legiety and Aleksandry Wachowicz.
Mamy to‼️ Mistrzostwo Polski obronione😎 🥇Kantor/Łosiak BVT 🥈Grzegorz Fijałek i Michał Bryl 🥉Rudol/Kujawiak BVT Jest mi niezmiernie miło że tak liczne grono kibiców przybyło w dniu dzisiejszym na finały👊❗️#audience To miłe ze siatkówka plazowa cieszy się coraz większym zainteresowaniem👏#beachvolleyball #polishvolleyball
373 Likes, 12 Comments - Piotr Kantor (@kantybv) on Instagram: "Mamy to‼️ Mistrzostwo Polski obronione😎 🥇Kantor/Łosiak BVT 🥈Grzegorz Fijałek i Michał Bryl..."
On the other side of the Atlantic, there was more success for American pair April Ross and Alix Klineman, who won the AVP Gold Series in Chicago – their third victory of the American tour this season. Taylor Crabb and Jake Gibb took the men’s gold.
Meanwhile, back in Europe and on the World Tour, it was a real French affair in Montpellier in the one-star tournament. The host country took four of the six medals available, with the French men sweeping the podium.
Edouard Rowlandson and Olivier Barthelemy beat Youssef Krou and Quincy Aye in the final (21-15, 21-12) to take gold, while Romain Di Giantommaso and Jérémy Silvestre won bronze.
In the women’s event, France’s Alexandra Jupiter and Lézana Placette finished on top of the podium having beaten Switzerland’s Esmée Böbner and Zoé Vergé-Dépré (21-15, 12-21, 15-12). The Swiss denied another French team from winning a medal when Nicole Eiholzer and Elena Steinemann beat Ophélie Lusson and Laura Longuet.
Incroyable semaine qui se finit en beauté avec une médaille d'or à la maison🥇🇫🇷 Une belle victoire partagée avec staff, famille, amis et toutes les personnes venues nous encourager ! 💙⚪️❤️ Merci à tous ceux qui ont contribué à rendre ce tournoi inoubliable! 📸: @beachkl @alexandriiiiiiiine
201 Likes, 14 Comments - Lézana Placette (@lezanana) on Instagram: "Incroyable semaine qui se finit en beauté avec une médaille d'or à la maison🥇🇫🇷 Une belle victoire..."
There’s a 10-day break now until the next tournament on the World Tour, when the women’s-only two-star event in China takes place between 13-16 September.
Beach elite head to China for crucial four-star action
Youth Olympians become youngest ever World Tour winners
The week in the sands of the world
World Tour winners and joy in Joao Pessoa