Stavanger, Norway, June 28, 2014 – Alexey Sidorenko and Alexandr Dyachenko twice surpassed their best ever FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour result by reaching the Stavanger Grand Slam semifinals on Saturday.
The pair will take on Brazil’s Ricardo Santos and Alvaro Filho in the semifinals on Sunday having beaten their fellow Brazilians Emanuel Rego and Pedro Salgado 2-0 (21-17, 21-15) in the quarterfinals and Austria’s Alexander Huber and Robin Seidl in the second elimination round.
In the second semifinal USA’s Phil Dalhausser and Sean Rosenthal face Switzerland’s Philip Gabathuler and Mirco Gerson, who are also into their first ever Grand Slam semifinals.
“We played three games today and we progressed in every game,” Dyachenko said. “Our opponents had a very hard match before that’s why maybe it was so easy for us.”
The pair have played together since 2010 and their previous bests were ninth place finishes in a number of Grand Slams having progressed to the second elimination rounds.
“It feels great and we hope for medals,” Dyachenko added. “That is the goal.”
Top seeds maintain progress
Dalhausser and Rosenthal continued their impressive form as they reached the semifinals after defeating Jonathan Erdmann and Kay Matysik.
The seventh-seeded Germans could do little in a match that the Americans won 2-0 (21-14, 21-17) in front of a packed centre court.
“We are playing pretty steady volleyball at the moment,” Dalhausser said, “and hopefully we can keep that momentum going until tomorrow.”
After winning all their matches 2-0 prior to the second elimination round, the Americans had to dig deep in their 2-1 (19-21, 21-16, 15-12) win against another German team, Alexander Walkenhorst and Stefan Windscheif.
“Phil and I are trying to get better every match,” Rosenthal added. “We are playing different sides this year and I think we are improving.
“It will be great to get a gold medal, but there are a lot of teams that want it just as bad as we do. We are going to try to keep playing well, and if Phil can serve and block like he has, I just have to continue to pass and side out.”
The double-gender US$800,000 FIVB Stavanger Grand Slam runs from Wednesday, June 25 until Sunday June 29. It is the eighth event and the fourth Grand Slam on the 2014 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour calendar that features nine Grand Slams and 11 Open tournaments.
The 2014 World Tour began at the Fuzhou Open in China in April and concludes at the Durban Open in South Africa in December. Next up on the World Tour calendar is the Gstaad Grand Slam which runs from July 9-13.