Former world champ survives in Hamburg

02.07.2019 - Hamburg, Germany

Chinese veteran Xue and partner Wang made it to the Round of 32 after lucky loser victory

A bronze medalist from the 2008 Beijing Olympics and 2013 world champion, Chinese veteran Chen Xue remains alive in the 2019 Beach Volleyball World Championships as her and partner Xinxin Wang survived the lucky loser round on Tuesday.

The 30-year-old blocker and Wang posted a straight-set (21-15, 21-10) victory over Japan’s Miki Ishii and Megumi Murakami to become one of the last four teams qualified to the Round of 32, where they’ll face Brazilians Rebecca Cavalcanti and Ana Patricia Ramos.

Two-time Olympian Ana Gallay of Argentina also advanced as her and partner Fernanda Gallay pulled a thrilling comeback 21-17, 13-21, 15-13 victory over Finland’s Taru Lathi and Anniina Parkkinen after they were down 12-9 in the third set. They will now play against Italians Marta Menegatti and Viktoria Orsi Toth.

“I think what made the difference for us was our attitude,” Gallay summarized. We weren’t playing well in the third set, but we kept fighting until the end, waiting for them to give us a chance and we they did we took it. In the next round we need to play more like as we did in the first set, but the main thing is that keep the fighting spirits.”

Russians Ekaterina Birlova and Evgenia Ukolova, who represented their countries at both the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympics, are also through after they eliminated Australians Nicole Laird and Becchara Palmer with a 19-21, 21-13, 15-13 triumph. Their next opponents will be Latvia's Tina Graudina and Anastasija Kravcenoka.

The fourth and final Round of 32 spot went to German rising stars Leonie Kortzinger and Sarah Schneider, who defeated the Canadian twins Megan and Nicole McNamara 21-19, 21-16 inside the Red Bull Beach Arena. They will now play Swiss Joana Heidrich and Anouk Vergé-Dépré.