Saxton & Schalk celebrate first win in balanced Olympic group
A second round victory has enhanced Ben Saxton and Chaim Schalk’s chances to get a spot in the next stage of the Rio 2016 beach volleyball tournament.
Beating the number four duo in the world – Brazilians Pedro Solberg and Evandro Junior – was important to keep the Canadians alive in the competition. Although, in a well-balanced pool, nothing has been defined yet.
“Anything can happen in our pool. We could win the pool or there’s still a chance we could not get out of the pool, so we’ve got to keep grinding and taking it one point at a time,” said Schalk.
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With the win, the Canadians also avenged an elimination setback to the Brazilians at a Major in Hamburg, last June.
“I’m really proud of our fight today,” Schalk said. “We just played steady. That’s a very physical team that likes to serve really tough. Going in, we knew we had to deal with it, we knew we had to control the ball and control the tempo.”
“The Canadians played really well and were strong under the net,” recognized Brazilian opponent Pedro Solberg.
On Thrusday, Saxton/Schalk will face the Cubans Nivaldo Gomez and Sergio Gonzalez in search of the second win at Rio 2016.
“Every team in our pool is around the same level, and it’s a tough one. We need to come out and get that win,” completed Schalk.