The 2023 Cardiff Open

Tom Brossard

After a long day of intense volleyball on Saturday the 27th of may, the remaining 8 men’s and women’s teams battled it out for survival, and a spot in the medal matches!

On the men’s side, the final’s began with some heat, as JJ/Cole and Haydn/Peter progressed through the winners bracket into the semi finals to face off against Ian/Derrick and Sam/Jonathon, who had made their way up after being cast into the losers bracket due to their earlier loss in the winners bracket.

Both semi finals had their audiences on the edge of their seat, as both matches went to a three set thriller, and both winning teams fought their way into the final after going to 2 points clear, with Sam/Johnathon and JJ/Cole advancing to meet in the finals, whilst Ian and Derrick sought out revenge against Peter and Haydn, claiming the victory for the underdogs through impressive displays of athleticism and great blocking from the split blocking pair.

In the final, Sam and Jonathon came out firing in the first set, racing to a 4 point lead , but Cole Durant changed the course of the match with some key aces, turning up the heat, reeling back the lead and scoring an ace down the line to take the first set, winning narrowly 21-19. In the second set JJ and Cole continued to keep their momentum as Cole established himself at the net with numerous blocks, and they secured the set and their victory with the second set ending 21-16.

Tom Brossard

Men’s final standings

-1st place to JJ and Cole

-2nd place to Sam and Jonathon

-3rd place to Ian and Derrick

On the other side of the venue, the women battled it out in their semi finals, with Flora/Angelika taking out Anna and Elena in a tightly fought semi final match, placing the first team through to the finals, whilst Gaia and Patrycja battled hard against Izzy and Saskia to secure their advancement to the gold medal match.

The bronze medal match was a big clash, but the difference was made by the standout player Izzy Tucker, who made tremors on court with her outstanding transition rate, dig after dig and then utilising her firepower to bring the heat from a smaller team.

In the Gold medal match the two remaining teams fought it out, but Gaia and Patrycja made the difference with their unwavering consistency, securing the win. Gaia in particular packed heat from the service line, keeping the Pressure up on the Brazillian’s, and wearing them down on the pass. After wearing the team down, Gaia and Patrycja took gold and got their names etched onto the dragon trophy!

Tom Brossard

Final women’s standings

1st place to Gaia/Patrycja

2nd place to Flora/Angelika

3rd place to Izzy/Saskia

Tournament organiser and silver medallist Sam Dunbavin stated

“We were really proud to host the Cardif open this year, the latest of our annual elite events in Wales. The level was fantastic, we were blessed with brilliant weather and were able to put on a show to the Welsh public! A big thanks to Cardiff Beach Volleyball Club and all the staff and volunteers that helped to make the event happen. “

If you want to catch up with the games, all of the second day’s Centre court matches are available to watch back with full professional commentary on the Cardiff Beach Volleyball Youtube page.

Here are the Links to the medal matches

Men’s Gold Medal Match: https://www.youtube.com/live/kdfeS8D6_xA?feature=share

Woman’s Gold Medal Match : https://www.youtube.com/live/cLhAKczT1D0?feature=share

Mens Bronze Medal Match: https://www.youtube.com/live/BK2PXYA0T5o?feature=share

Woman’s Bronze Medal Match: https://www.youtube.com/live/3TNHBTnaZeM?feature=share

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