Beach Volleyball News

Kozhikode, Kerala, India, December 19, 2015 – Home fans sank their hearts on Saturday when their beach spikers were sent packing by strong visitors both in men’s and women’s competitions to sadly say good bye to the AVC Continental Cup Central Zone Beach Volleyball Championships at Kozhikode in Kerala.

Contesting the do-or-die semi-finals, powerful Iranians thrashed hosts India two matches in a row in the men’s competition, with Iran A’s Raoufi Rahman/Salemiinjehboroun Bahman, gold medallists at the last year’s Asian Beach Tour Samila Open in Songkhla, Thailand and bronze medallists at this year’s edition, spent only 24 minutes in brushing off India A’s P. Mohan/Balamani Sankar Alwar Rajamani 21-6 21-5. Team-mates Houshmand Saber/Pourasgari Abbas followed suits by outclassing Dhawasker Pralhad/Krishna Chaitanya Pennumuch 21-15 21-18 to hand Iran an eventual 2-0 victory over India and secure a Sunday’s final berth.

In the second semi-finals, Kazakhstan won a hard duel against Sri Lanka in straight two matches. Kazakhstan A’s Alexey Kuleshov/Alexandr Dyachenko, who partnered Alexey Sidorenko to win gold medal at the last year’s Asian Games in Incheon, Korea, faced a tough challenge from Kumara Asanka/Ekanayake Pubudu Kumara to beat the Sri Lanka A in hard-fought 2-1 (21-8 19-21 21-9) and put Kazakhstan the pole position 1-0.

Kazakhstan remained strong in their B team with the likes of Dmitry Yakovlev and Sergey Bogata. They played a tough match against Yapa Sashimal/Chinthaka Sujeewa to beat Sri Lanka B in a scintillating straight-set 21-19 21-14 victory. Kazakhstan eventually powered past Sri Lanka 2-0 to set up a showdown with Iran.

In the women’s semi-finals, Nepal found Kazakhstan too strong to go down tamely in straight two matches. Kazakhstan A’s Tatyana Mashkova, who teamed up with Irina Tsimbalova to win gold medal at the last year’s Asian Beach Games in Phuket, Thailand, and Bakhtygul Samalikova mercilessly crushed Nepal A’s Choudhary sisters, Saraswoti and Nebika, 21-8 21-8. Yekaterina Lassyuta/Irina Tsimbalova completely ended the Nepal’s determined challenge with their lop-sided 21-10 21-8 win over Budhathoki Binita/Bhandari Reshma. Kazakhstan finally annihilated Nepal 2-0 to battle it out with Sri Lanka for the crown.

Sri Lanka on Saturday stunned hosts India 2-1 in the second semi-finals. Kuda Kottunnage Gunawardaha Geethika Lalani/Bogahalanda Gunasingha Gnanasagari thrashed KP Athira/ Shahana Kozhikkatt Abdu 21-9 21-15 to give Sri Lanka an initial 1-0 lead.

However, India struck back aggressively to give the visitors a proof that victory never comes easily. KP Athira/V A Aswathi fought hard in their match against  Gunasinghe Hewayalage Nirosha Lakmini/Siriwardana Asha Nilimini Wichramaratne before overcoming Sri Lanka B 22-20 21-18 for a 1-1 tie.


The golden match was contested to determine the eventual winners and Sri Lanka fared much better when Kuda Kottunnage Gunawardaha Geethika Lalani/Bogahalanda Gunasingha Gnanasagari stunned India’s KP Athira/Shahana Kozhikkat Abdu and their home crowds with an effortless 21-6 21-10 win.