Roi Et, Thailand, May 5, 2024 – It was all just history repeating itself at the 5th Asian U19 Beach Volleyball Championships at Ban Nong Ya Ma Community School Courts here on Sunday when Iran and Australia, which had claimed respective men’s and women’s gold at the 3rd edition in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand in 2021, reclaimed gold, with Kashani Habib Akbarzadeh/Amir Ali Ghalehnovi taking the men’s title with remarkable unbeaten run.

Iranian third seeds Akbarzadeh/Ghalehnovi, who earlier pulled off dramatic 2-1 win against Australians Finley Bennett/Adam Fejes in the pool play, were incredibly dominant in the Sunday morning’s semifinals against another strong pair from Australia, second seeds Killian Donovan/Jett Rocker-Graham.

Akbarzadeh/Ghalehnovi got off to a brilliant start to take a totally one-sided first set 21-10 before Aussies bounced back gallantly to clinch the second set 21-16, forcing the tie-breaker. However, the Iranians continued good combinations with aggressive attacks, nice tips and deceptive shots to win the deciding set 15-10, match and a slot in the afternoon final showdown against Lebanese Hadi El Chabib/Jad Abi Karam.

The Lebanon’s 17th seeds had a fairytale run to reach the Sunday’s final. They stunned Thailand’s top seeds Big Manyahong/Aphichat Thonghin with a magnificent comeback 2-1 win in pool play and demolished Australians Finley Bennett/Adam Fejes 2-0 in round of 16. In the quarterfinals, they repeatedly beat local hopefuls Big/Aphichat 2-0, but struggled hard in the semifinals against Thailand’s  Rueangrit Wiromrat/Suranath Ratanapolsaen.

El Chabin/Jad narrowly edged past the Thai pair, champions at the last week’s South East Asian (SAVA) U19 Championships at the same venue here, with epic tie-break win 17-21, 21-19, 15-12 in exhausting 69 minutes.

Against Lebanese El Chabib/Jad in the highly-anticipated showdown, Iranians Akbarzadeh/Ghalehnovi performed superbly to limit the rivals’ defense with their powerful attacks and excellent combinations. They gave no chance to rivals to comfortably seal the deal 2-0 (21-12, 21-12) for the men’s title.

It was the second time that Iranian men’s team returned with gold. The Iranians claimed their first gold in the 3rd edition in Nakhon Pathom three years ago. They also picked up silver at the previous edition here after going down to hosts Thailand in 2022 aside from claiming additional bronze in the inaugural championships in 2016 in Vientiane, Laos.

Thailand had to be content with bronze medal when Rueangrit/Suranath avenged Australian second seeds Killian Donovan/Jett Rocker-Graham for the disappointing 1-2 loss in pool play to beat the same rivals with incredible comeback 2-1 (15-21, 21-17, 17-15) win.

In the women’s event, reigning champions Thailand lost their crown when top seeds Varagkhana Sogalee/Somruedee Koedkaew, who claimed gold at the last week’s SAVA U19 Championships, suffered a setback to go down 0-2 (16-21, 17-21) to second seeds Jasmine Rayner/Cameron Zajer in the final. The Aussies lost only one match in pool play against Thailand’s 14th seeds Inthira Bunpasong/Suchipha Rittila en route to winning gold on Sunday.

For Australia, it was also their second gold achieved in the Asian U19 Championships. They captured the first gold in 2021 when the championships took place in Nakhon Pathom, beating hosts Thailand in the women’s showdown. However, Australia had already claimed their first medal in the 2016 edition in Vientiane, Laos when their men’s team returned with silver medal after going down to Thailand in the final clash.

Earlier in the morning semifinals, Varagkhana/Somruedee, who did not lose a match while reaching the Sunday’s final, spent 36 minutes in beating Piyathida Onlaoo/Orathai Sembut 2-0 (21-19, 21-15) in the all-Thais affair.

The other semifinal clash saw Australians Rayner/Zajer come up with flawless performance to brush off Chinese Qi Siyu/Lei Yijing 2-0 (21-13, 21-16).

In the third-place playoff encounter, Piyathida/Orathai, who had already beaten Qi Siyu/Lei Yijing 2-1 in the pool play, succumbed to 0-2 (14-21, 23-25) loss to the Chinese 16th seeds. Qi/Lei secured third place, leaving the Thai duo to finish fourth place in the tournament.

Thailand Volleyball Association President Mr Somporn Chaibangyang presided over the awards presentation and closing ceremony in the Sunday afternoon. He presented AVC plaques to generous sponsors and Roi Et organisers who played important role in helping make the championships a smooth run and a great success.

Trophies were also presented to respective medallists. In the men’s event, Iranians Kashani Habib Akbarzadeh/Amir Ali Ghalehnovi emerged triumphant. Lebanese Hadi El Chabib/Jad Abi Karam finished second, with Thailand’s Rueangrit Wiromrat/Suranath Ratanapolsaen in third position.

Australians Jasmine Rayner/Cameron Zajer captured the women’s crown, while Thailand’s Varagkhana Sogalee/Somruedee Koedkaew came in second place. Chinese Qi Siyu/Lei Yijing secured the third place.

Meanwhile, playoff matches for U19 World Championships quotas were held on Sunday and at the end of the playoffs, AVC has officially confirmed the federations qualified for the U19 World Championships, set to take place in Shangluo, China between August 27 and September 1, 2024, as shown below.

Regarding the aforementioned quotas, five federations qualified for the men’s Main Draw in the U19 World Championships comprise Iran, Lebanon, Thailand, Australia and New Zealand, while another five federations qualified for the women’s Main Draw in the world meet in Shangluo consist of Australia, Thailand, Japan, Malaysia and Kazakhstan.

The four federations qualified for the men’s Qualification Tournament of the U19 World Championships are Malaysia, Kazakhstan, Singapore and Indonesia, while Hong Kong China will be in the reserve list. In the women’s event, the four federations qualified for the Qualification Tournament of the world meet in Shangluo comprise Indonesia, New Zealand, Chinese Taipei and Hong Kong China, with Vietnam in reserve list.










AVC Website: click

AVC Facebook: click

AVC Twitter: click:

AVC Instagram: click:

Mikasa Instagram: click:

AVC Youtube: click: Asian Volleyball Confederation

AVC WeChat: Asian Volleyball Confederation