BEACH VOLLEYBALL Preview: New World Champions immediately challenged at Gstaad 5-star Major

World Champions Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes (CAN) after winning the 2018 Gstaad Major (Photo: FIVB)

An exciting two weeks of the FIVB World Beach Volleyball Championships ended on Sunday.

On Tuesday, the qualifying rounds of the FIVB World Tour 5-star Major in Gstaad (SUI) began. Such is the life of a pro beach player.

This is one of the high-paying events in beach volleyball – there are only two in 2019 – with $600,000 in prize money and $40,000-32,000-20,000-16,000 for the top four placers (per team). The top seeds and their results at the Worlds:

1. Anders Mol/Christian Sorum (NOR) ~ 2019 World Championships bronze medalists
2. Viacheslav Krasilnikov/Oleg Stoyanovskiy (RUS) ~ 2019 World Champions
3. Konstantin Semenov/Ilya Leshukov (RUS) ~ 2019 World Champs Round of 16
4. Nick Lucena/Phil Dalhausser (USA) ~ 2019 World Champs quarterfinalists
5. Grzegorz Fijalek/Michal Bryl (POL) ~ 2019 World Champs Round of 16

1. Nina Betschart/Tanja Huberli (SUI) ~ 2019 World Champs fourth place
2. Sarah Pavan/Melissa Humana-Paredes (CAN) ~ 2019 World Champions
3. Alix Klineman/April Ross (USA) ~ 2019 World Championships silver medalists
4. Barbora Hermannova/Marketa Slulova (CZE) ~ Injured; dnc at World Champs
5. Ana Patricia Ramos/Rebecca Cavalcanti (BRA) ~ 2019 World Champs Round of 16

In the men’s draw, Worlds silver medalists Julius Thole and Clemens Wickler (GER) are not entered; fourth-placers Tri Bourne and Trevor Crabb of the U.S. are seeded ninth. The women’s World Championships bronze medalists – Taliqua Clancy and Mariafe Artacho del Solar (AUS) – are also not competing.

Norway’s Mol and Sorum are the defending champs in Gstaad, winning over Pablo Herrera and Adrian Gavira of Spain in last year’s final. Worlds winners Pavan and Humana-Paredes won in Gstaad in 2018, beating German duo Chantal Laboureur and Julia Sude.

The men’s final will be on Saturday (13th) and the women’s on Sunday (14th). Look for results here.