Olsztyn, Poland, August 26, 2015 – Young Austrian team Lorenz Petutschnig and Tobias Winter were one of eight men’s teams to reach the main draw at the Olsztyn Grand Slam on Wednesday.
The pair reached their first FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour main draw of the season with a 2-1 (21-18, 14-21, 15-9) win over fellow Austrians Robin Seidl and Alexander Huber.
Petutschnig and Winter started the day with a 2-1 (21-19, 16-21, 15-13) defeat of Switzerland’s Philip Gabathuler and Mirco Gerson, a team that won two World Tour bronze medals in 2014 and it was a win that set them up for the all-Austrian clash.
“It was tough,” Petutschnig said. “We knew that it would be tough, because it is always tough against another Austrian team. We were really motivated and our win over Switzerland gave us a lot of confidence. Three days ago we lost to them in Austria, so we wanted some revenge.”
Petutschnig and Winter have happy memories of playing in Poland. Two years ago they won bronze at the inaugural FIVB U23 Beach Volleyball World Championships.
Since then they have enjoyed some success on the European and Austrian tours, all the while trying to make their breakthrough on the World Tour.
“We are a young team and we try to make the step into the main draw on the World Tour,” Petutschnig said. “Of course it is difficult and we know it will be tough in the pool.
“It took some time, but we will stick together and even when results weren’t that good, so it is good to have a win like today.”
Australian pair Isaac Kapa and Christopher had to beat Qatar’s Jefferson Santos Pereira and Cherif Younousse to progress. They are a side they know well from the Asian Tour and who impressed at the Netherland 2015, FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships by reaching the elimination rounds.
The Australians had to fight hard to win the first set, but eventually progressed with a 2-0 (26-24, 21-12) victory.
“The two sets didn’t come easy, that’s for sure,” Kapa said. “Winning the first set gave us a little bit of confidence going into the second set and we found good bit of form there and had a handy lead, so we’re stoked to get into the main draw.
“We haven’t played them this year, but they are quality and a good team, that’s for sure.”