Maoming, China, May 11, 2019 – Title-holders Taliqua Clancy and Mariafe Artacho Del Solar moved a step closer to capturing the Asian Senior Beach Volleyball Championships two in a row as the superb duo pulled off a scintillating 2-0 (21-17 21-8) win against Phoebe Bell/Jessyka Ngauamo in the all-Australians semi-final encounter to secure their place in the Sunday’s final showdown.
Second-seeds Clancy and Artacho Del Solar had a promising run in their career. Winning their career’s debut in the 2017 Grand Front Osaka Open in October in Japan, they won the FIVB World Tour 3-star in Qinzhou, China just six days later and followed up that great achievement by winning the Asian Tour Palembang Open in Indonesia and the FIVB World Tour 2-star in Sydney. In 2018, the Australian duo were in brilliant form to win the FIVB World Tour 3-star in Lucerne Open as well as the World Tour 4-star Espinho Open and silver medal at the Commonwealth Games at home in Gold Coast.
On Saturday, Clancy and Artacho Del Solar, who last month picked up bronze medal at the FIVB World Tour 4-star in Xiamen, outclassed compatriots in the quarter-finals and semi-finals for a place in the showdown. In the quarter-finals, Clancy and Artacho Del Solar demolished Nicole Laird/Becchara Palmer 2-0 (9-21-14 21-9) to later clinch a final berth after a 3-0 rout of Bell/Ngauamo in the semi-finals.
Top seeds and crowd favourites Wang Fan and Xia Xinyi also proved one of the strongest teams to beat this time. The Chinese duo remain unbeaten without losing a set to their respective rivals in the four-day Championships.
Wang and Xia beat Japanese Miki Ishii/Megumi Murakami twice in the final showdowns to capture the last year’s Asian Games in Indonesia and the last month’s Asian Tour Samila Open in Songkhla, Thailand. The indomitable Chinese still proved a cut above Ishii/Murakami to beat the Japanese duo 2-0 (22-20 21-14) in the Saturday’s quarter-finals here in Maoming.
Wang and Xia continued their remarkable unbeaten record in their semi-final clash against Sherysyn Toko/Miller Pata to thrash the Vanuatu’s lone hopes in this top-tier competition 2-0 (21-17 21-15).
All three women’s teams of Australia cruised their ways to the Saturday’s quarter-finals, but only two made it to the semi-finals. Unfortunately, Clancy/Artacho Del Solar faced Bell/Ngauamo in the all-Australians affair before the former sealed the deal.
On Sunday, Vanuatu’s Toko/Pata take on Australians Bell/Ngauamo in the bronze medal match, while China’s Wang Fan/Xia Xinyi and Australians Clancy/Artacho Del Solar will battle it out for the eventual crown.
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