With 1,520 points earned in two weeks, the Cubans are moving fast towards a berth in Paris 2024

With 1,520 points earned in two weeks, the Cubans are moving fast towards a berth in Paris 2024
Fecha de publicación: 
3 April 2024
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Jorge Alayo and Noslen Diaz started the 2024 Volleyball World Beach Pro Tour season with a big mountain to climb in order to qualify for the Paris 2024 Games via the FIVB Olympic Rankings, but the two Challenge events held in Brazil in March made their task a lot more attainable.

With silver medals won at both the Recife Challenge and last weekend’s tournament in Saquarema, the Caribbean collected 1,520 points and, although they’re still outside the qualification zone, their odds of being among the top 17 teams in the ranking by the June 9 deadline have significantly improved.

With nine wins and four losses over two weeks of play in Brazil, the 22-year-old Alayo and the 21-year-old Diaz found their way to back-to-back gold medal matches and ended the two weeks of play with 4,900 points, having started it with 3,380.

One factor that places the Cubans much closer to the qualification zone, which now has the last team qualifying with 6,080 points, is the fact that they have only eight of the 12 required results accounted for, meaning they’re still going to add the entirety of the points they earn in the next four events to their total, while most of their rivals will need to drop lower finishes and replace them with higher ones, adding just a share of the points they earn.


FIVB Beach Volleyball World Ranking and provisional Olympic Ranking – Men

Alayo and Diaz are entered to compete at the Guadalajara Challenge, the Tepic Elite16 and the Xiamen Challenge during April and will likely be inside the qualification zone by the end of the month if they can maintain their good results.

The two teams that appeared in the Saquarema bronze medal match also collected several points with their finishes, but are still in a difficult position in the Olympic race. Third-placed Julien Lyneel and Remi Bassereau have now 4,340 points and are the third-best French team in the list while fourth-placed Martin Ermacora and Philipp Waller now total 3,900 points and also have a pair of Austrian duos ranking above them. With each country having a maximum of two teams per gender at the Olympics, they would need to not only break into the qualification zone, but also pass at least one of their compatriots to qualify.

Saquarema Challenge winners Andre Loyola and George Wanderley were already in a great spot entering the event, but managed to become an even safer bet for Paris 2024 by moving up to third place with 8,840 points and creating a 1,840-point separation from the third-best Brazilian team of Pedro Solberg and Gustavo ‘Guto’ Carvalhaes.

Ludwig and Lippmann earn massive points

Among the women, Germans Laura Ludwig, a Rio 2016 Olympic champion, and Louisa Lippmann were the team that benefited the most from their finish in Saquarema. The Europeans took silver in Brazil and added some massive 760 points to their total.


Ludwig and partner Lippmann significantly improved their situation with the 760 points earned in Saquarema

Their new total of 6,500 points has not only helped them pass compatriots Karla Borger and Sandra Ittlinger, who finished 19th and saw their 6,080 total remain unaltered, to return to second place among the German teams, but also moved them within striking distance to the country’s top duo of Svenja Müller and Cinja Tillmann (6,900), who they can pass at the Guadalajara Challenge, in two weeks.

FIVB Beach Volleyball World Ranking and provisional Olympic Ranking – Women

Gold medalists Chen Xue of Xinyi Xia of China collected 800 points with their victory in Saquarema, adding half of them to their new total of 8,600, which puts them in a very strong position to qualify.

Brazil’s Talita Antunes/Taiana Lima and Hegeile ‘Hege’ Almeida/Vitoria Rodrigues earned 720 and 680 points with their third and fourth-place finishes in their home event, but, as new teams in the 2024 season, won’t probably have enough time to get to the minimum of 12 results required to qualify.

The Saquarema Challenge also impacted the internal race between Swiss women’s teams, which now has three duos within a 120-point range. With their fifth-place finish in Brazil, Tokyo Olympic bronze medalists Joana Mäder and Anouk Vergé-Dépré went from third to first in the country’s domestic battle with 7,140 points, passing Tanja Hüberli/Nina Brunner (7,100), who didn’t play in Brazil, and Esmée Böbner/Zoé Vergé-Dépré (7,020), who were ninth and didn’t add any points.

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