Quang Ninh, Vietnam, May 20, 2022 – It’s all just history repeating itself as Indonesia and Thailand successfully retained their titles and top three in the men’s and women’s events at the previous edition in 2019 remained unchanged at the 31 Southeast Asian Games Beach Volleyball Tournament at Tuan Chau Beach here on Friday.

Indonesia, Thailand and Philippines finished top three in the men’s event three years ago in Philippines and returned to make the similar top three podium in the Vietnam-hosted SEA Games here, while Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines made a one-two-three finish in 2019 and the three teams had the same performance this time around.

Indonesia stamped their authority in the men’s event, with the 2018 Asian Games silver medallists Ade Rachmawan/Mohammad Ashfiya too strong for Surin Jongklang/Banlue Nakprakhong to brush off the Thai tandem 21-13, 21-18 to give the indomitable Indonesians the first win and Gilang Ramadhan/Rendy Licardo repeated the similar feat with a scintillating 21-17, 21-15 victory against Thais Pithak Tipjan/Poravid Taovalo for the eventual 2-0 wins and the SEA Games title.

Since the tournament inception in 2005 in Philippines, only Indonesia and individual players from the country captured gold medals in the SEA Games beach volleyball tournament.

As the Indonesians stole the show to claim gold, the silver medal went to Thailand and Philippines struggled to beat hosts Vietnam in the Golden Match for bronze medal.

Philippines’ Jude Garcia switched his partner from Anthony Lemuel Jr Arbasto to Jaron Requinton and they combined well to beat Nhat Ton Long/Nguyen Van Nha in hard-fought battle 21-19, 21-19 before Nguyen Lam Toi/Trang Quang Vu revived their fortunes to oust Alnakran Abdilla/Jaron Requinton 21-19, 21-18 for a 1-1 tie.

In the Golden Match to determine the eventual winners of the third-place playofmatch, Jude Garcia and Jaron Requinton performed well to send Nguyen Lam Toi/Trang Quang Vu packing 21-15, 21-19 to help Philippines reclaim their bronze medal.

Cambodia came in 5th place after beating Malaysia 2-1 in the classification round for 5th-6th places.

In the women’s showdown, title-holders Thailand continued their remarkable unbeaten run in the 31st SEA Games as they made a clean sweep in the single round-robin preliminaries without losing a single set to their respective rivals. In a rematch with Indonesia in the Friday’s showdown, Thailand came up in a splendid form to beat Indonesia 2-0 for the eventual crown.

Asian champions Taravadee Naraphornrapat/Worapeerachayakorn Kongphopsarutawadee pulled off a stunning 2-0 (21-18, 21-18) win against the 2018 Asian Games bronze medallists Dhita Juliana/Putu Utami, while the 2014 Asian Games silver medallists Varapatsorn Radarong/Tanarattha Udomchavee followed suit by trouncing Nur Sari/Sari Hartati 21-8, 21-16 to end the Indonesia’s challenge in two matches.

The third-place playoff between Philippines and hosts Vietnam saw the former struggle to beat the latter 2-0. Cherry Ann Rondina/Bernadeth Pons rallied past Vietnam’s Nguyen Vu Ngoc Lan/Nguyen Le Thi Tuong Vy 20-22, 21-18, 15-12, while Jovelyn Gonzaga/Floremel Rodriguez routed Vietnamese’s Truong Duong Thai My Huyen/Nguyen Thi Thanh Tram 21-17, 21-18 for bronze medal.

Vietnam were empty-handed in the SEA Games Beach Volleyball Tournament on home soil as they finished fourth place in both men’s and women’s events.

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