Roi Et, Thailand, September 15, 2022 – Two teams apiece from Australia, China and Japan and one team each from hosts Thailand and New Zealand cruised to quarterfinals of the 2022 Asian Senior Women’s Beach Volleyball Championship at Ban Nong Ya Ma Community School competition venue here on Thursday.
Lin Meimei and Xia Xinyi are due to take on newly-crowned AVC Beach Tour Roi Et Open champions Wang Xinxin and Zeng Jinjin in the all-Chinese quarterfinal clash on Friday, while reigning Asian champions Worapeerachayakorn Kongphopsarutawadee/Tarawadee Naraphornrapat from Thailand 1 will take on New Zealand 1’s Alice Zeimann/Polley Shaunna.
The other two quarterfinal matches turn out to be a mighty clash between Japan and Australia, with Japan 1’s Miki Ishii/Sayaka Mizoe, silver medallists at the previous Asian meet in Phuket, Thailand last year, challenging Australia 2’s Phoebe Bell/Nicole Laird, who won their first Women’s Elite Australian Championships title this year, and Japan 2’s Akiko Hasegawa/Yurika Sakaguchi facing daunting task against Taliqua Clancy/Mariafe Artacho Del Solar from Australia 1.
All participating teams competed their last match in the pool round-robin preliminaries in the Thursday morning, after which top two teams from each pool advanced to the round of last 16.
As expected, top teams made their mark after completion of the pool plays. Thailand 1’s Worapeerachayakorn Kongphopsarutawadee/Tarawadee Naraphornrapat and Kazakhstan 1’s Alina Rachenko/Anastassiya Ukolova finished top two in Pool A, while Australia 1’s Taliqua Clancy/Mariafe Artacho De Solar and Japan 3’s Ren Matsumoto/Non Matsumoto captured the top two spots in Pool B.
Japan 1’s Miki Ishii/Sayaka Mizoe and Thailand 4’s Jidapa Bunongkhun/Patcharaporn Seehawong ended in first and second places in Pool C, with China 1’s Lin Meimei/Xia Xinyi and Philippines 1’s Cherry Ann Rondina/Bernadeth Pons capturing the top two spots in Pool D.
China 2’s Zeng Jinjin/Wang Xinxing and Thailand 5’s Suchinna Choemphun/Apinya Saengpaeng finished top two in Pool E, while top two teams in Pool F making the round of last 16 comprised Australia 2’s Phoebe Bell/Nicole Laird and Vanuatu’s Toko Sherysn/Lawac Majabelle.
Japan 2’s Akiko Hasegawa/Yurika Sakaguchi and Philippines 2’s Floremel Rodriguez/Genesa Jane Eslapor topped Pool G and New Zealand 1’s Alice Zeimann/Polley Shaunna and Vietnam’s Nguyen Le Thi Tuong/Vu Ngoc Lan Nguyen claimed the top two spots in Pool H.
In the Thursday afternoon’s round of last 16, top teams remained on course as they lived up to all expectations to power past the lower-ranked opponents and secure their places in the quarter-finals.
China 2’s Zeng/Wang, fresh from capturing the inaugural Roi Et Open title at the same competition venue last week, proved too strong to Toko/Lawac to eliminate the Vanuatu’s pairing 2-0 (21-15, 21-9), while China 1’s Xia/Lin, who had a disappointing outing at the Roi Et Open to finish fifth place, demolished Vietnam’s Nguyen Le Thi Tuong/Vu Ngoc Lan Nguyen in easy encounter 2-0 (2-9, 21-12).
Zeng and Wang set up a Friday’s all-Chinese quarterfinal clash against Xia and Lin, allowing only one Chinese pairing to make it through to the semifinals, set to be held in the afternoon on the same day.
Thailand 1 and defending champions Worapeerachayakorn and Taravadee also proved their class against Rodriguez and Eslapor to cruise past the Filipinas 2-0 (21-7, 21-14). The local hopefuls will next go up against New Zealand 1’s Polley/Zeimann, who finished joint fifth at the AVC Beach Tour Roi Et Open last week, in the quarterfinals. The Kiwis pulled off a comfortable 2-0 (21-11, 21-13) triumph against Kazakhstan 1’s Rachenko/Ukolova in the round of the last 16.
Japan 1’s Ishii and Mizoe, silver medallists at the previous edition of the Phuket-hosted Asian Senior Beach Volleyball Championships in Thailand last year and the last week’s AVC Beach Tour Roi Et Open, continued their unbeaten run with a dominant 2-0 (21-16, 21-15) win against Thailand 5’s Suchinna and Apinya.
In-form Ishii and Mizoe will next play Australia 2’s Rio de Janeiro Olympian Laird and Bell, who made their way through Roi Et Open to the semi finals, but just fell short against the Japanese duo. Laird and Bell saw off Thailand 4’s Patcharaporn and Jidapa 2-0 (21-13, 21-16) in the round of the last 16.
Japan 2’s Akiko and Yurika produced a comeback 2-1 (14-21, 21-19, 15-9) win against Japan 3’s Ren and Non to next face off with Australia 1’s Clancy and Mariafe, silver medallists at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. The superb Australian pairing made their return to international competitions for the first time since they won silver at the Commonwealth Games in August.
In their round of last 16 on Thursday, Clancy and Artacho Del Solar, who had already made it two in succession in the Asian Senior Beach Volleyball Championships consisting of 2018 in Satun, Thailand and 2019 in Maoming, China, put it past fighting Philippines 1’s Rondina and Pons in thrilling battle 21-17, 21-17.
The quarterfinals will be held on Friday, September 16 from 9am local time, with title-holders Worapeerachayakorn and Taravadee taking on Kiwis Polley and Zeimann at the Centre Court. The four winning teams in the quarterfinals will next be pitted in the do-or-die semifinals from 3pm local time.
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