The Russian teams were particularly successful at the 2016 World ParaVolley Intercontinental, as both their men and women’s squads secured the last qualification spots for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.
The competition was held 17-23 March in Anji, Huzhou, China, with tournaments held for the non-qualified and qualified teams.
The Russian women defeated the Netherlands 30-28, 25-22, 25-10 in the finals of the non-qualified women’s teams to claim the last Paralympic spot.
The Russian men triumphed over Ukraine 25-23, 25-10, 17-25, 25-19 to stamp their ticket to Rio.
In the qualified teams tournament, the US women made a mark in history by defeating China for the first time in a major World ParaVolley championship. Having finished second to China at the 2008 and 2012 Paralympic Games, and the 2010 and 2014 World Championships, the USA finally took the gold medal at the 2016 Intercontinental, beating China 25-23, 12-25, 25-20, 28-26.
Iran took the gold in the men’s qualified division, defeating Brazil in what turned out to be a one-sided match. A close first set – 25-23 – was followed by Iran turning it on in sets two and three, defeating Brazil 25-14 and 25-13 for a 3-0 victory.
In the bronze medal qualified teams matches, the Brazilian women defeated Ukraine 22-25, 25-23, 25-10, 5-20, and the Egyptian men defeated China 25-18, 25-19, 25-27, 25-20.
The qualified teams for Rio 2016 in sitting volleyball are:
Men: Russia, China, Egypt, USA, Brazil, Iran, Germany and Bosnia and Herzegovina
Women: Russia, Ukraine, Rwanda, China, Iran, Brazil, USA, Canada