Port Vila, Vanuatu, December 7, 2017 – Vanuatu and Fiji finished on top of their pools and earned a break from the sun and heat of the Korman Beach, as the men’s pool play came to a close on the second day of the Oceania Commonwealth Games Beach Volleyball Qualifiers on Thursday.
Six teams including Fiji and hosts Vanuatu moved forward to the final stage of the men’s qualification event. Epic struggles could be witnessed with teams fighting for the opportunity to proceed to the semi-finals on Friday morning.
Solomon Islands’ Kefu/Nuopule, who suffered 0-2 loss to Fiji and Papua New Guinea on the previous day, made amends to beat Kiribati’s Anro/Manuera 21-14 21-17 in 32 minutes and went on their fine form to stun Cook Islands’ B. Heath/D. Heath with a comeback 2-1 (14-21 21-14 15-4) win in 37 minutes. Kefu/Nuopule will next take on Fijians Korowale/Elliot in the semi-finals.
The other semi-final clash on Friday morning sees Papua New Guinea’s Mea/Kilarupa strut their stuff against Vanuatu’s Chilia/Aru. Mea/Kilarupa on Thursday went down to Fijians Korowale/Elliot 1-2 (17-21 21-19 7-15) to later thrash Tuvalu’s Ata/Saaga 21-15 21-14.
The semi-finals are due to be held Friday morning, with two winning teams advancing to the gold medal match to determine the lone berth on offer for the next year’s Commonwealth Games in Australia.
In the women’s competition, the round robin has established Fiji as the most dominant team of the competition, making a clean sweep of their four matches. Fiji are anxiously waiting for the outcome of Sunday’s two matches that could see anyone of Solomon Islands, Tuvalu or Papua New Guinea progress to the gold medal playoff depending upon the outcome of their encounters.
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