Road To The Olympic Games


Pavan, Humana-Paredes headline big day for Canada at beach world championships

Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes opened the FIVB Beach World Championships in Vienna on Friday with a big win, one of four Canadian duos to open with a victory.

Canadian duo look to extend winning ways in biggest volleyball event since Rio

Sarah Pavan, right, and Melissa Humana-Paredes, not seen, won their opening match at the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships in Vienna on Friday with a 2-0 (21-13, 23-21) victory over their Dutch opponents. (FIVB/twitter)

Sarah Pavan of Kitchener, Ont., and Toronto's Melissa Humana-Paredes opened the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships in Vienna on Friday with a big win, one of four Canadian duos to open with a victory.

In their Pool G match the Canadian duo got the women's bracket started with a 2-0 (21-13, 23-21) victory over Marleen Ramond-Van Iersel and Manon Nummerdor-Flier of the Netherlands.

With 48 teams on both the men's and women's side, the beach worlds occurs every two years and is the biggest beach volleyball meet since last year's Rio Olympics. 

Pavan and Humana-Paredes are entering the tournament on a hot streak, having already won four medals on the World Tour, including a gold in Porec, Croatia on Canada Day. 

"I think it's really great for team moral to come off with a win and build on what we put on in the first game and keep growing throughout the week," Humana-Paredes said.

"It was great, we were happy to start off such a beautiful tournament with the first game and just getting a feel for the venue, the audience, the crowd [and] the weather. It was really nice to get that first game under our belt."

The seventh-seeded Canadians hope to keep the positive vibes going when they take on Marta Menegatti and Rebecca Diane Perry of Italy on Sunday.

Tons of action

With 28 matches taking place on opening day several Canadians saw action, including 15th seeded Heather Bansley and Brandie Wilkerson.  In their Pool J match, the 15th-seeded duo swept Ana Gallay and Maria Virginia Zonta of Argentina 2-0 (21-12, 21-10).

While in Pool I, Taylor Pischke and Jamie Lynn Broder were unable to overcome Sara Hughes and Kelly Claes of the United States, falling 2-0 (21-15, 21-14).

On the men's side Sam Pedlow and Sam Schachter swept Indonesian pair Mohammad Ashfiya and Ade Rachmawan 2-0 (21-13, 21-12).

And in an all-Canadian affair 13th seeds Chaim Schalk and Ben Saxton claimed a 2-0 (21-14, 21-19) win over Aaron Nusbaum and Ryan Vandenburg, seeded 37th.

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