Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 15, 2016 – Alexander Brouwer and Robert Meeuwsen will face their successors as FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships gold medallists at the Copacabana Beach Arena with a place in the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games gold medal match on the line.
Brouwer and Meeuwsen won the world title in 2013, but two years later Alison Cerutti and Bruno Schmidt topped the beach volleyball world in front of Brouwer and Meeuwsen’s home fans in the Netherlands.
Now a place in Thursday’s beach volleyball gold medal match is on the line. Brouwer and Meeuwsen are aiming to become the second European team to win Olympic gold after Jonas Reckermann and Julius Brink won at London 2012.
Expectancy on Alison and Bruno to win is high at Rio 2016 with the chance to end Brazil’s 12-year wait for Olympic champions when Emanuel Rego and Ricardo Santos won gold at Athens 2004. For Alison it will also make up for losing to Brink and Reckermann at London 2012, when he and Emanuel left with silver.
The other semifinal is a match-up between two European teams who have enjoyed a degree of success on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour.
Italy’s Daniele Lupo and Paolo Nicolai defeated one Russian team – Nikita Liamin and Dmitri Barsuk – in the quarterfinals and now face another in the form of Konstantin Semenov and Viacheslav Krasilnikov for a place in the gold medal match.
Both Nicolai and Semenov have produced powerful attacks at the net, while Lupo and Krasilnikov are bundles of energy in defence and transition.
It will be a meeting of two familiar rivals and a repeat of the 2016 European Championships final, which the Italians won.
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