04.07.2019 - Hamburg, Germany
Strategy has been everything for Jake Gibb and Taylor Crabb at the 2019 Beach Volleyball World Championships as the Americans secured their spots in the Round of 16 in Hamburg with a solid 21-16, 21-17 victory over Spanish Pablo Herrera and Adrian Gavira at the Rothenbaum Stadium.
The Americans were unanimous in crediting their coach Rich Lambourne, a Beijing 2008 Olympic champion with the USA volleyball team, for the strategy that kept the always dangerous Spanish under control.
“We played a nice game,” Gibb, who scored six block and three serve points, reflected. “Our coach Rich Lambourne has put together a great gameplan and we got to give him credit for it. He came up big and won us this game today.”
That, however, wasn’t the only strategy the Americans succeeded on as they made the decision of sitting out of five World Tour tournaments since April to get in Hamburg in their best form. And it seems to be working just fine so far.
“We planned it so that we were 100 percent in this tournament,” Crabb explained. “We prepared really well for this tournament because it’s the biggest one of the year, so we wanted to be playing at our best level here. I feel that we’ve been steadily increasing our play and that’s what we wanted to do here.”
Their next opponents will be Russians Oleg Stoyanovskiy and Viacheslav Krasilnikov, who secured a 21-13, 29-27 victory over Czech Republic’s Ondrej Perusic and David Schweiner in the Round of 32.
Two other Round of 16 matchups were determined at the start of the afternoon at the Red Bull Beach Arena. One of them will see Anders Mol and Christian Sørum of Norway, who downed Germans Philipp Bergmann and Yannick Harms 21-13, 21-13, play against Latvia’s Martins Plavins and Edgars Tocs, who eliminated Brazilians Pedro Solberg and Vitor Felipe with a 21-19, 21-18 win.
Brazil came out on top of the other duel with Latvia, though, as reigning world champion Andre Loyola and his partner George Wanderley pulled a thrilling 17-21, 21-15, 17-15 victory over Aleksandrs Samoilovs and Janis Smedins. Their opponents will be Poland’s Grzegorz Fijalek and Michal Bryl, who advanced after a 21-16, 21-19 triumph over Australians Damien Schumann and Cole Durant.