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Beach Volleyball: China pairs into last 16 of Xiamen Grand Slam

Long-time Chinese star Chen Xue (cover photo) and 16-year-old World Tour debutant Xia Xinyi (pictured above) won all three matches in Pool A at the Xiamen Grand Slam. Photos: FIVB.

Long-time Chinese star Chen Xue (cover photo) and 16-year-old World Tour debutant Xia Xinyi (pictured above) won all three matches in Pool A at the Xiamen Grand Slam. Photos: FIVB.

October 25, 2013: Top-seeded Chinese pair Chen Xue and 16-year-old Xia Xinyi collected their third straight victory in Pool A on Friday to lead eight unbeaten teams into the 16-team second round of the Xiamen Grand Slam.

 

The Chinese pair concluded their pool action by beating Ana Gallay and Georgina Klug 2-0 (21-16, 21-13) in 39 minutes, with the Argentine pair finishing third in the pool.

 

Chen has been impressed by Xia, her new partner, who’s making her debut on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour in the final Grand Slam event of the year.

 

“Xia is playing in the World Tour for the first time and this is our first World Tour event, so I didn’t expect to win three matches in a row,” said Chen, who won July’s World Championships in Poland with her long-time partner Zhang Xi, having won their first major title at the 2006 Asian Games.

 

“She has been doing a great job and I’m very satisfied with our teamwork and communications. As a young player, her performance has quite surprised me.”

 

Americans April Ross and Kerri Walsh, who won gold two weeks ago at the Sao Paulo Grand Slam, were beaten 2-0 by Italy’s Marta Menegatti and Viktoria Orsi Toth to finish second in Pool E.

 

Ross and Walsh had to then face Gallay and Klug in the first round – made up of the the second and third-placed teams from the pool stage – but won to advance to the last 16.

 

The fifth-seeded Americans will next face China’s Yue Yuan, 26, and Ma Yuanyuan, 23, the eighth seeds who finished top of Pool H and earned a bye to the second round.

 

Chinese eighth seeds Yue Yuan and Ma Yuanyuan won all three matches in Pool H.

Chinese eighth seeds Yue Yuan and Ma Yuanyuan won all three matches in Pool H.

The second round and quarter-finals will be held on Saturday, with the semis and final on Sunday.

 

This week marks the first time Xiamen has hosted an event on the World Tour, although China has previously staged more than 23 women’s and 14 men’s FIVB beach volleyball tournaments, including the Fuzhou Open and Shanghai Grand Slam earlier this year.

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