KAZAKHSTAN THROUGH TO MEN’S AND WOMEN’S SHOWDOWNS AT AVC CONTINENTAL CUP PHASE 1 – CENTRAL ZONE

KAZAKHSTAN THROUGH TO MEN’S AND WOMEN’S SHOWDOWNS AT AVC CONTINENTAL CUP PHASE 1 – CENTRAL ZONE

Visakhaapattanam, India, December 17, 2019 – Kazakhstan secured their final berths in both men’s and women’s events at the AVC Beach Volleyball Continental Cup Phase 1 – Central Zone here, with the Kazakh women’s team battling it out with Sri Lanka in the Wednesday’s showdown.

Iran stormed past Sri Lanka 2-0 and Kazakhstan outclassed hosts India in the men’s single elimination on Monday, resulting in the final clash between Iran and Sri Lanka on Wednesday.

Kazakhstan, Sri Lanka and hosts India strutted their stuff in the women’s event, which saw Kazakhstan automatically entered the final match following the top seeding they have been awarded. The Kazakhs are due to take on the Tuesday’s winners between India and Sri Lanka, in the showdown on Wednesday.

The eventual winning teams (one from each gender) from the three-day tournament will get tickets in each gender to test their mettle in the 8-team 2020 AVC Beach Volleyball Continental Cup Finals, where only the eventual winners will qualify for the Tokyo 2020.

On Tuesday, the second day of the double-gender competition, Sri Lanka powered past hosts India 2-0 in the men’s third-place playoff match, while Sri Lanka celebrated their double victory after 2-0 rout of hosts India in the women’s event.

In the men’s competition earlier, Indika Tiron Jayathilaka Kankani Achchi Mankanamalage/Jayan Sanuja Pannis Koralange gave Sri Lanka an initial 1-0 lead after beating Indians Pralhad Dhawaskar/Aaron Pereira 2-0 (21-18 24-22) in 40 minutes. Ashen Rashmika Jayasinghe Liyanage/Asanka Pradeep Kumara Mrdagedara Lekamlage struggled hard to beat Naresh Tumpera/Raju M Ch Rama Krishnam with a fantastic comeback 20-22 21-18 15-12 win in exhausting 53 minutes for the Sri Lanka’s scintillating 2-0 win against the host side. Sri Lanka took bronze medal, with hosts India in fourth place. Iran and Kazakhstan, the two winning teams on Monday, set up the men’s final clash on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the women’s division on Tuesday served as the semi-final clash where the winning team will make the cut for the Wednesday’s showdown against top seeds Kazakhstan. Sri Lanka hogged the limelight after stunning the host side 2-0.

An impressive duo of Kasuni Tharuka Lakshani Alawaththafe/Dinesha Prasadani Jayamaha Hitihamige performed well to put Sri Lanka in front 1-0 after spending 29 minutes in demolishing Indians Jenifer Gopi/Subraja Ramu in a totally one-sided battle 21-9 21-8.

Sri Lankans Kumbure Gedara Chathurika Madhushani Weersingha/Meda Gedera Deepika Bandara also proved their talents by eliminating Lavanya Kachiraju/Sumalatha Bai Muda in a comfortable encounter 21-11 21-4 in 23 minutes.

Following the Tuesday’s win, Sri Lanka go up against Kazakhstan in the women’s showdown on Wednesday. India had to be content with bronze medal.

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