Rio 2016 – Day 4 Beach Volleyball
I got a lot of grief indoors for getting Beach Volleyball tickets and I have had all the jokes about budgie smugglers and only going for the thongs. Well, let me tell you thongs were very much on show, but the blokes, thankfully, took to the sand pit dressed like they were going for a paddle at Margate .
We lucked out that our session’s first game today at the very impressive temporary Copacabana Beach Arena was Brazil’s men against Spain’s men. World v European champions, and a very, very partisan 10,000 crowd made the day such a memorable experience. The atmosphere was a cross between a hyped up NBA play-off game with added DJ help and dance routines and a high energy Brazilian football match at the Maracana.
Brazil won in 2 sets, it’s best of 3, first to 21, although the Brazilians only won the first set after a prolonged tie-break. The Brazilian team led by the giant of a bloke Alison Cerutti, I wouldn’t tell him he had a girls name, alongside Bruno Schmidt. They must be favourites to go the whole way to gold for a sport invented in Hawaii but perfected on the Copacabana. And I will definitely be following it. The men, yes.
Next up was the women and rather oddly pitched Canada against Canada, which must of confused the many Canadians that had appeared in the crowd. A crowd that had dramatically thinned after thousands of Brazilians moved outside to the beach cerveza bar.
I stayed to check on the thongs, and I can report that to tell the difference one team had red on, and one black! They did also have different names and it was the hands-down better pairing of Sarah Pavan and Heather Bansley that went through in straight sets 21-16, 21-11.
Anyway, I was a hero after seeking and buying Beach Volleyball tickets, it was the most fun we’ve had so far, in a dreamy beautiful setting and it was fantastic to be part of a memorable atmosphere.