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Beach Volleyball - 15. August 2011.

Liliane Maestrini pushes on through pain to win London 2012 test event gold with Angela Vieira

Liliane Maestrini had to grit her teeth and force herself through the pain to win gold with Angela Vieira at the Visa FIVB Beach Volleyball International.

The pair teamed up to great effect in the final and rallied to come back from losing the opening set and defeat the United States’ Jennifer Kessy and April Ross 10-21, 21-15, 15-13.

“Throughout the tournament it was difficult for us because I had a lot of pain in my shoulder and I was trying to forget the pain, but it was easy even though it hurt during the games,” Lili said. “I tried to play my best and forget the bad things. Angela helped me through the bad times and we stuck together.”

The pair were one of two teams to finish on the podium after Taiana Lima and Vivian Cunha finished with the bronze medal. It shows the depth of Brazilian beach volleyball after Juliana Felisberta and Larissa Franca won gold at the FIVB Swatch Beach Volleyball World Championships in Rome this year.

“In Brazil we have many good teams, but today was our day and our match,” Lili said. “I really enjoyed being in London, it was my first time here, our first time here. We played really well today and it was a tough match against a really strong team and we one we respect a lot.”

It was a disappointing end for Ross and Kessy, who had only dropped their first set of the tournament in their semifinal win over Denise Johns and Lucy Boulton. However, their participation in the London 2012 test event left them determined to return for the London 2012 Olympic Games and Ross feels that there is the strong probability of another Brazil versus USA final.

“We want to come back here even more now,” Ross said. “I think if you take the majority of the World Tour finals, the majority have been USA v Brazil. They have been different teams, but usually USA v Brazil, so I think it is highly likely.”
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