15.03.2020 - Vienna, Austria
Brazil reinforced its dominance in the beach volleyball scene in South America as the country won gold and bronze medals at both the men’s and women’s tournaments of the second event of the 2020 continent’s tour on Sunday in Lima, Peru.
Recently-crowned Brazilian champions André Loyola and George Wanderley were the winners among the men while Thiago Barbosa and Oscar Guimarães took bronze. Among the women, Tainá Bigi and Victoria Lopes topped the podium with Bárbara Seixas and Carol Horta finishing third. Argentina took both silver medals with Nicolas Capogrosso/Juan Azaad and Ana Gallay/Fernanda Pereyra.
André, a 2017 world champion with Evandro Gonçalves, and George needed all three sets (21-15, 18-21, 15-11) to down Capogrosso and Azaad in the men’s gold medal match in Lima.
“It’s a very important title for us, it’s George’s first win in the South American and our first as a team as well,” André explained. “We are very confident after we won the Brazilian Tour and this is another goal we achieved too. Anytime we can put Brazil at the top of the rankings, that’s important.”
Thiago and Oscar, who represented Brazil at the Pan-American Games in the Peruvian capital last year, secured bronze with a 21-19, 21-12 triumph over Argentina’s second team of Bautista Amieva and Leandro Aveiro.
In the women’s final, the 24-year-old Tainá and the 20-year-old Victoria needed just two sets (21-15, 21-16) to secure the gold medal against the two-time Olympian Gallay and her partner Pereyra, who took silver at the Pan-American Games in Lima last July.
“We knew it would be a tough tournament, especially with Brazil sending such a strong team as Bárbara and Carol,” Victoria analyzed. “We lost to them on pool play, but managed to fix our mistakes and win when we met in the semifinals. We served well and kept our side out solid during the final and those were the factors that helped us to win.”
Rio 2016 Olympic silver medalist Bárbara Seixas stepped on the podium with her new partner Carol Horta as the duo used its experience to prevail over the surprising Ecuadorans Ariana Castro and Briggitte Batioja in straight sets (21-12, 21-12).
With the results in Lima, Brazil is at the top of the South American rankings in both genders. For the men, the country has 360 points, followed by Argentina and Chile with 320 each. Among the women, the Brazilians have compiled 400 points, 40 more than Argentina (360) and 80 more than Chile (320).
The third event of the season was scheduled to happen from March 20-22 in San Juan de los Morros, Venezuela, but it has been postponed by the South American Federation due to the coronavirus outbreak.