Roi Et,Thailand, March 14, 2019 – Teams participating in the double-gender SMM Asian U21 Beach Volleyball Championships at the Ban Nong Ya Ma Community School courts between March 15 and 18 attended the General Technical Meeting on Thursday at Pra Dub Ploy Room, Petcharat Garden Hotel.

The four-day event serves as the Asian qualification tournament, which will see the top five teams (nations) from each gender secure berths to compete in the FIVB Beach Volleyball U21 World Championships in Udon Thani, Thailand later this year.

Technical Supervisor Mr. Kritsada Panaseri presided over the Thursday’s meeting, while in attendance in the meeting were Referee Delegate Mr. Jayaraman Srinivasan from India, media representatives and all participating players.

A total of 28 men’s teams from 15 countries comprising Australia, China, Hong Kong China, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, New Zealand, Oman, Pakistan, Singapore, Chinese Taipei, Vietnam and hosts Thailand were divided into eight pools from Pool A to Pool F. After the pool round-robin preliminaries, only top two teams will advance to the next round.

The women’s event features 23 teams from 13 nations consisting of Australia, China, Hong Kong China, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Laos, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, Chinese Taipei, Vietnam and hosts Thailand. The participating teams were split into eight pools of three teams apiece from Pool A to Pool G, while Pool H had only two teams.

Each country fielded two teams in both men’s and women’s events, except Oman, Pakistan and Vietnam. The above-mentioned three nations sent only one team apiece in both genders. Malaysia sent only one team in the women’s category.

According to the results of the drawing of lots, top seeds Thailand 1’s Phanupong Thanan/Phichakon Narathon are in Pool A with Japan2’s Rikuto Goto/Seiru Hayashi and Javier Tang /Ye Le Tan of Singapore 2.

“ We are 100 percent ready for this tournament,” said Phanupong. “I am quite excited to play at home once again, but it is also great to have a large number of home fans to support us. We have been training here for a while, so we quite get used to the conditions of the competition courts. Certainly, our expectation here is to win the tournament.”

Second seeds Amir Malmir/ Abolhassan Khakizadeh of Iran1 are in Pool B with Faryad Ali Usman /Mustafa Khan Ahmad of Pakistan 1 and Xingyu Tang/ChengAn Tao of China 2, while Pool C consists of third seeds Nurdos Aldash/Abdulmadjid Mokhammad of Kazakhstan 1, Vietnam and Chinese Taipei 2.

In the women’s category,  Thailand1’s Chanthira Khanok/Yodsaphat Pakham , are in Pool A with Hong Kong 2 and New Zealand 2.

“Our opponents in our pool are quite strong, but if we believe in ourselves and play according to our game plans, I think we can go far,”said Thatsarida.

“We just want to play one match at a time. If we play well every match ,I believe we will have a good result in this tournament.”

Japan1’s Nanako Kawasaki/Ai Shigechika are in Pool B with Thailand 2 of Pawarun Chanthawichai /Thatsarida Singchuea ,who claimed gold medals at the last year’s Asian U19 Beach Volleyball Championships in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand and Chinese Taipei 2’s Wen Yi-Chin/Pei Hu Xiao.

Pool C comprises Tiaan Smith /Jana Milutinovic from Australia1, Kazakhstan 2 and China 2, with China 1, Laos 1 and Japan2 in Pool D.

The first match of the top-flight competition will start at 8:30am local time.


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