Alison (left) and Bruno receive their Rio 2016 gold medals
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 18, 2016 – Alison Cerutti and Bruno Schmidt lived up to their status as Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games favourites by defeating Daniele Lupo and Paolo Nicolai in front of a full house of 12,000 at the Copacabana Beach Arena on Thursday.
The Brazilians defeated the Italians 2-0 (21-19, 21-17) and can now add Olympic gold to their 2015 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships title and their 2015 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour victory.
For Alison in particular the win makes up for four years ago at London 2012. Just as he did this year Alison went in as reigning world champion, but he and then partner Emanuel Rego fell at the final hurdle when they lost to Germany’s Jonas Reckermann and Julius Brink in the gold medal match at Horse Guard’s Parade.
For Lupo and Nicolai the silver caps a memorable year in which they also won a second European title. It also goes some way to fulfilling the promise they showed at London 2012 when they knocked out the then defending champions Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers of the USA.
The Italians began both sets in the ascendancy, but both times Alison and Bruno showed their class to step up their performance and pull back their cross-court rivals. When match point arrived the Brazilians needed only one chance and victory was theirs.
In doing so they become the first Brazilian Olympic champions since Athens 2004 when Emanuel and Ricardo Santos topped the podium. READ MORE
Alexander Brouwer and Robert Meeuwsen became the first Dutch side to win an Olympic medal when they held off the challenge of Konstantin Semenov and Viacheslav Krasilnikov.
The Dutch pair won 2-0 (23-21, 24-22), but were pushed hard in both sets and needed four match points before they booked their place on the Rio 2016 podium.
Brouwer and Meeuwsen became the first Dutch team to win an FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships, when they triumphed in 2013 and now they have bettered Reinder Nummerdor and Richard Schuil’s fourth-place finish from London 2012. READ MORE