Vietnam, fresh from beating Laos and Timor-Leste in the men’s event, made it three in a row on Friday after 2-0 demolition of hosts Cambodia to move atop Pool A in the 32nd Southeast Asian (SEA) Games Beach Volleyball Tournament, which serves as the AVC Beach Volleyball Continental Cup Phase 1 Southeastern Zone, at Otres Beach in Sihanoukville, Cambodia.
Nguyen Lam Toi/Quang Vu Tran handed Vietnam the first win as they overcame a strong challenge from Thy Menghuong/Chuk Sophea 22-20, 21-17 in grueling 49 minutes and Nguyen Thuyen/Van Nha Nguyen denied the Cambodia’s comeback in the second match when they brushed off Sophon Pich/Oem Narit 21-14, 21-16 for the Vietnam’s eventual 2-0 win against the host side.
Vietnam had 9 points from straight three wins to stay atop Pool A, followed by Philippines with 5 points from two wins in a row. Timor-Leste collected 3 points from one win against two losses to come in third place, while hosts Cambodia and Laos have yet won a match to get no point.
After convincing 2-0 win against Timor-Leste on Thursday, Philippines struggled to beat hosts Cambodia the following day. Thy Menghuong/Chuk Sophea stunned Filipinos Abdilla Alnakran/Requinton Jaron in hard-fought three-set thriller 21-19, 14-21, 16-14 to put the host side in front 1-0.
However, Garcia Jude/Buytrago James gave Philippines a successful comeback. The superb duo produced a terrific come-from-behind 2-1 (19-21, 21-18, 15-12) win against Cambodians Sophon Pich/Oem Narit to level it at 1-1. Garcia/Buytrago remained in superb form to edge past Thy Menghuong/Oem Narit 2-0 (23-21, 21-17) in the Golden Match for the Philippines’ eventual 2-1 win.
Timor-Leste recovered from the first-day setback with two losses in a row on Thursday to bounce back for an impressive 2-0 win against Laos. Correia Fabricius Da Cruz/Valente Joel Savio won the first match 22-20, 21-13 against Laotians Saykhammoun Lid/Sanyalack Khampiene and Fernandes Xavier Inocencio/Freitas Jonio Martinho fought back to beat Cjhanthongdeng Chansabab/Phommachan Bounmixay 2-1 (18-21, 21-18, 15-10) to hand Timor-Leste the first victory in the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia.
In Pool B, Singapore, which suffered 0-2 loss to Thailand on Thursday, regained the lost pride to beat Malaysia 2-1 on Friday. Goh Teng Kuan Melvin /Tan Trevis lost a daunting match against Malaysians Kai Xu Looi/Wei Chun Ler 1-2 (21-14, 18-21, 9-15). However, Tay Kingsley/Shen Fan Yang Mark revived the fortunes for Singapore.
The impressive duo demolished Malaysians Muhammad lima Adili Alias/Jeng Yin Low 2-0 (21-16, 21-10) for a 1-1 tie and they later upped their tempo to beat another Malaysian duo, Kai Xu Looi/Wei Chun Ler, in hard-fought three-setter 21-16, 20-22, 15-11 for Singapore’s eventual 2-1 win.
On Saturday, Thailand look set to mightily challenge archrivals and defending champions Indonesia, with Laos taking on Cambodia and Vietnam playing Philippines.
Meanwhile, in the women’s event, Indonesia and Vietnam registered their first wins, with the former outplaying Singapore 2-0 in Pool A and the latter narrowly beating Philippines 2-1 in Pool B.
In-form Eka Yokebed/Sari Nur cruised past Soh Cecillia Hui Chin/Tan Kai Sun Alicia 21-15, 21-7 to put Indonesia ahead 1-0 before Juliana Dhita/Ratnasari Desi shut out the Singapore’s comeback opportunity with a completely lopsided 21-7, 21-6 win against Chong Eliza/Phua Zhao Rong in the second match.
In the closely-contested encounter between Vietnam and Philippines, Pons Bernadeth/Rodriguez Floremel struggled to beat Dinh Thi My Nga/Nugyen Le Thi Tuong Vy 2-1 (21-17, 18-21, 16-14) for the Philippines’ win in the first match.
However, Filipinas Rondina Cherry Ann/Gonzaga Jovelyn could not make it in the second match as they went down to Chau Ngoc Lan/Nguyen Thi Thanh Tram in close battle 1-2 (18-21, 21-13, 15-17). The Philippine duo tried hard in the Golden Match, but fell victim to Chau Ngoc Lan/Nguyen Thi Thanh Tram 0-2 (15-21, 22-24) for the eventual 2-1 conclusion in favor of Vietnam.
On Saturday, Malaysia will challenge Vietnam, reigning champions Thailand play Philippines and Cambodia go up against Indonesia.
The eventual champions in men’s and women’s events in the on-going 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia will secure their Finals berths in the AVC Beach Volleyball Continental Cup, with the Finals for the former due to be hosted by Australia and the latter to be organized by China.
The silver medallists from both genders in Cambodia will also make the cut for the Semi-finals of the AVC Continental Cup, the Asia’s qualification tournament for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, but host countries for the Semi-finals have yet announced.
AVC Website: click www.asianvolleyball.net
AVC Facebook: click www.Facebook.com/AsianVolleyballConfederation
AVC Twitter: click: www.twitter.com/AsianVolleyball
AVC Instagram: click: https://www.instagram.com/avcvolley/?hl=en
AVC Youtube: click: Asian Volleyball Confederation
AVC WeChat: Asian Volleyball Confederation