27.05.2019 - Stavanger, Norway
After hosting 10 World Tour events before, the Norwegian port of Stavanger got the gig to host the 2009 World Championships on its shores. The seventh official edition of the championships once again saw players from nations from across the globe battle it out for a share of one million US Dollars in prize money.
New names on the trophy
Two new teams (or four more players) wrote their names into the history books by winning the title in Stavanger.
After winning three titles in a row, Kerri Walsh Jennings and Misty May-Treanor’s dominance came to an end before the tournament started as Misty suffered a torn Achilles injury while practicing for the Dancing with the Stars TV show.
In the absence of Misty and Kerri, the US still had plenty of cheer about as April Ross and Jennifer Kessy took the women’s gold medal, defeating Brazilians Juliana Felisberta and Larissa Franca in the final. Brazil also took third place in what was an all-Brazilian bronze medal match, where Maria Antonelli and Talita Antunes overcame Shelda Bede and Ana Paula Henkel.
In the men’s tournament, reigning world champions Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers, who came into the championships as reigning Olympic champions as well, had to settle for bronze as Germany’s Julius Brink and Jonas Reckermann took the title.
The Germans beat their American rivals in the semifinals before Julius and Jonas beat Brazilians Alison Cerutti and Harley Marques – the number one seeds – in the final.
In both the men’s and women’s events the top three seeds all finished on the podium, but that wasn’t to say there were no impressive results from the less fancied pairs
In the women’s tournament, Austrian sisters Doris and Stefanie Schwaiger, seeded 12th, reached the quarter-finals, as did Dutch duo Sanne Keizer and Marleen van Iersel, the number 12 seeds. Brazilan-born Georgian pair Andrezza Martins and Cristine Santanna, seeded 33, posted a ninth place finish before losing to Nicole Branagh and Elaine Youngs.
On the men’s side, the highest-seeded top-five finishers were American Matt Fuerbringer and Casey Jennings, seeded 17th and reached the quarter-finals, as did Spaniards Adrian Gavira and Pablo Herrera playing in their first World Championships as a team. New Zealand duo, Jason Lochhead and Kirk Pitman were seeded 26th but also reached the last 16.
Worth a watch
Brief highlights and the crucial match points from both the men’s and women’s finals are on YouTube, and you can watch them here:
How did the Norwegians do?
In three words: not too bad.
In total seven tandems took part for the hosts and four teams progressed to the elimination stages, posting 17th places.
Nila Ann Hakedal and Ingrid Torlen and Janne Kongshavn and Katherine Maaseide went beyond the women’s pool play, while in the men’s tournament both Tarjei Skarlund and Martin Spinnangr and Vegard Hoidalen and Jorre Kjemperud fell shortly before the quarter-stage.
A special World Championships because…
Well it was held in Norway and the trophy was a Viking sword. Yes, a SWORD.
As trophies go… well let's say the conversation at airport security may have been interesting.
"Why have you got this sword, madam?"
"I won the 2009 Beach Volleyball World Championships."
"Ok, come with me."
Impress your friends by saying:
In the first two knockout rounds in the men’s tournament (24 matches) only one match went to three sets: when Austrians Gosch/Horst beating Norway’s Kjemperud/Hoidalen 21-19, 16-21, 15-11.
Where are they now?
Kiwi pair Kirk Pitman and Jason Lochhead are now successful coaches, with Pitman coaching the Australian teams while Lochhead oversees US duo Nick Lucena and Phil Dalhausser having previously been the coach of Canadian team Saxton/Schalk.
The championships in three words?
Best trophy ever
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