Olsztyn, Poland, July 23, 2017 - For the third-time this season and the 16th-time overall in the 30-year history of the FIVB World Tour, a men’s team that qualified for a FIVB World Tour Main Draw won an event as Markus Bockermann and Lars Fluggen of Germany topped the podium here Sunday at the US$300,000 Warmia Mazury Olsztyn Open.
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Seeded 25th in the Main Draw in the third annual stop at Crooked Lake (Lake Ukiel or Krzywe Lake) venue after winning a qualifying match Wednesday, Bockermann and Fluggen defeated higher-seeded teams from Canada, the United States and Latvia Saturday to advance to Sunday’s gold medal match against 13th-seeded John Hyden and Ryan Doherty of the United States.
With a 2-1 (15-21, 21-18, 15-11) win Sunday in 44 minutes over the 44-year-old Hyden and professional baseball player-turned Beach Volleyball competitor Doherty, Bockermann and Fluggen topped a FIVB World Tour podium for the third time after winning gold medals in 2015 at international stops in China and Qatar. With the victory, Bockermann and Fluggen split the $20,000 first-place prize while the Americans shared $16,000 for second-place.
In the men’s bronze medal match, 16th-seeded Lombardo Ontiveros and Juan Virgen of Mexico defeated 21st-seeded Martins Plavins and Haralds Regza of Latvia 2-0 (21-17, 22-20) in 40 minutes. The Mexico pair split the US$10,000 third-place prize while Plavins and Regza shared $8,000 as both teams posted their best finishes on the 2017 FIVB World Tour.
With Warmia Mazury Olsztyn Open being a “preview” event for 2017 FIVB World Championships, all four men’s pairs in the “final four” have qualified for the $1-million event where play begins next Friday in the Austria capital of Vienna and concludes August 5 for women and August 6 for men.
In Sunday’s women’s Warmia Mazury Olsztyn Open, top-seeded Talita Antunes and Larissa Franca of Brazil posted a 2-1 (20-22, 21-18, 16-14) win in 50 minutes over third-seeded Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes of Canada.