IMAGE | Michael Willson
After losing the gold medal match at the Commonwealth Games to Melissa Humana-Paredes and Sarah Pavan, Australians Mariafe Artacho and Taliqua Clancy have gained revenge with a 2-0 win in their opening match of the Beach Volleyball FIVB World Tour Finals in Hamburg, Germany.
In the finale of the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, Artacho and Clancy dropped a 2-0 (21-19, 22-20) decision in 41 minutes to Humana-Paredes and Pavan to disappoint their Australian family, friends and fans.
“At the Commonwealth Games, the pressure was 10 times more,” said the 24-year old Artacho, who is playing her first full-season with Clancy.
“It’s always going to be a tough game against them but yes, we knew they had one on us so maybe they had a little more pressure than us. The start today was very crucial, and you’ve got to start strong or else you find yourself catching up on every single point.”
For the 26-year old Clancy, who has won four FIVB World Tour gold medals this season with Artacho for the most titles by any men’s or women’s team in Australian international Beach Volleyball history, she said “to be honest, I wasn’t thinking too much about the Commonwealth Games. We’re still a fresh team and so any moment we can play the top teams in the world, we really relish them and take those opportunities when we get them. it’s never easy when you’re battling the top teams in the world.”
Women’s pool play continues through Saturday morning with six group matches Thursday. The women’s semi-finals and medal matches will be played Sunday where the winning team shares the $150,000 first-place prize.
Final score – Mariafe Artacho / Taliqua Clancy Australia (7) def. Melissa Humana-Paredes / Sarah Pavan Canada (6) 21-16, 21-19 (36).
Follow the action here