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Beach Volleyball

Pareja-Pecana fall to IRN, Garcia-Arbasto swept by AUS in AVC Beach Volley


AJ Pareja and Henry Pecaña suffered a tough three-set defeat, while Jude Garcia and Krung Arbasto absorbed a straight-set loss in the men’s matches for the 2021 Asian Senior Beach Volleyball Championships, Tuesday at the Bang Tao Beach in Phuket, Thailand.

Pareja and Pecaña could not sustain the momentum they gained from their first-set win to instead slip against the Iran-1 duo of Abolhamed Mirzaali and Alireza Aghajanighasab in three sets, 21-19, 17-21, 8-15, in the first match in Pool G.

Only the top two teams for each of the three-team pools (except Pool H, which has two teams already) advanced into the knockout rounds and the Iranians got themselves closer with the win.

The Filipino second team tried to mount a comeback after two straight points, ending with a Pecaña off-the-block hit for an 8-13 deficit. Nonetheless, Aghajanighasab found the former napping on the receiving end and ended the match with an ace.

Pareja and Pecaña zoomed into the lead early in the first set, but the Iranians cut the deficit to two at 18-20. Pareja then closed it out for the Philippines with a strong hit into the back zone. The Iranians, however, minimized their errors in the second to force a decider and eventually pocket the win.

Meanwhile, Garcia and Arbasto tried to keep in step with the Australian tandem of Christopher McHugh and Paul Burnett, but eventually lost the match, 14-21, 13-21.

This made it a must-win situation for both the Filipino sides in their next matches on Thursday.

Garcia-Arbasto will take on regional rivals in Singapore’s Kingsley Tay and Melvin Goh Teng Kuan first at 9:40 a.m. (10:40 a.m., PH time) on Court 4. Afterward, Pareja-Pecaña will battle hometown bets in Thailand-2’s Narongdet Kangkon and Dunwinit Kaewsai at 10:30 a.m. (11:30 a.m.) on Court 2.

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Grew to appreciate various sports from tennis to judo. True-maroon kiddo since the new millennium. Fanboy. Singer. Occasional sports writer.

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