02.07.2019 - Hamburg, Germany
Alison Cerutti and Álvaro Filho knew right after the drawing of lots of the 2019 Beach Volleyball World Championships that they were part of one of the toughest pools in the men’s tournament with Russia’s Semenov/Leshukov, USA’s Slick/Allen and Qatar’s Assam/Tamer.
So, what did the Brazilians do about it? The only thing they could - they prepared accordingly.
Their hard work off the court paid off as the Rio 2016 Olympic champion and his partner navigated through Pool E with three victories in as many matches and secured their spots in the Round of 32 in Hamburg.
“Our coaching staff is doing a phenomenal job in dissecting each piece of information available about our opponents,” Alison said. “They’re feeding us with some little pieces of advices and it felt like we had the perfect strategy for every match so far. This was a tough group and we had to go through different situations, such as coming back from a deficit against the Americans and playing against a team that had nothing to lose in Qatar. I feel we’re improving very quickly here and I’m very excited to look forward and see what we can do.”
Their final pool play match was against Semenov and Leshukov and put in play the top spot of the pool. The Brazilians were better in the deciding moments and took home a hard-fought 26-24, 21-19 victory.
“It was a tough one, both sets went our way by the minimum margin,” Álvaro added. “The wind direction changed several times during the match and we did a good job in communicating with each other and figuring out the adjustments we needed to make. It was a great pool and we got the job done. Now we can’t wait to see what we have ahead of us.”
The third team to advance from the pool was the one of Slick and Allen as the Americans downed the Qataris 21-13, 21-11 and took the second spot, leaving the Russians in third place.