Photo: Stuart BarracloughGuilherme Prata (BRA)
Top Brazilian men Guilherme Prata and Vinicius Font defeated their compatriots in their final group match to finish at the top of their group and confirm a place in the semifinals. After taking a very close first set 64, the favourites kept their composure to wrap up the match 64 60.
Elsewhere in the group the Venezuelans Ramon Guedez and Jorge Penalver made no mistake of confirming their place in the semifinals by defeating the Chilean team 60 61 to come second in the group.
After the match Jorge Penalver was delighted to be in the semifinals saying ‘it feels great to have won today. After we beat the Brazilian team yesterday we knew we had a strong chance of progressing. We now have an even bigger challenge ahead if we are going to be able to win the title and lift our nation’s flag’.
In group two Brazilians Marcus Ferreira and Thales Santos also reigned supreme as they remained undefeated seeing off their Chilean opponents Felipe Araya and Thomas Zamora 62 60 to come top of their group and move into the semifinals tomorrow.
It was all to play for in the other half of the group as Arubans Ricardo de Vreede and Sergio Salm Foek took on Venezuelans Jose Peraza and Pedro Penalver for second place and a place in the semifinals.
The first set went in the Venezuelan’s favour 62 but they were unable to capitalise in the second set as the Arubans fought back to level the score 26 75. Spurred into action, the Venezuelans stepped up a gear to join their compatriots in the semifinals winning the match 62 57 64.
Speaking to Sergio Salm Foek after the match he said ‘we knew that this was the decisive match and we have had very close matches against these Venezuelans in the past. We played a very good match but just couldn’t manage to beat them today. Anyway, it has been a great experience to play for our country and I look forward to coming back next year’.
In the ladies event both top Brazilian teams continued their unbeaten run as world number ones Samantha Barijan and Joana Cortez defeated compatriots Paul Cortez and Luciana Fernandes 62 62 while Lorena Melo and Flavia Muniz saw off the Chilean challenge with a comfortable 61 60 victory.
Nerves will be high tomorrow as these two top teams must face each other in their final group match to decide who will be crowned Pan American Champions.
Andrea Periera and Patricia Diaz were also victorious today setting up a decisive third place match tomorrow against Brazilians Paul Cortez and Luciana Fernandes.
It was an all Brazilian affair in the mixed final as Sophia Kelbert and Thales Santos overcame the favourites and top seeds Vinicius Font and Flavia Muniz 75 64. The third place was closely contested as Venezuelans Andrea Pereira and Pedro Penalver defeated compatriots Patricia Diaz and Jorge Penalver 76(5) 75.
‘It feels amazing to have a Pan American Championship title and I hope I can repeat my success in the men’s event tomorrow’.