Gusenyi, Rwanda, May 27, 2012 – All Africa Games gold medallists Mauritius sealed their ticket to the London 2012 Olympic Games following a tough victory over Kenya and a thrilling golden set in the final of CAVB Women’s Beach Volleyball Continental Cup at Palm Beach in Gusenyi, Rwanda on Saturday.
In the bronze medal match Mozambique saw off South Africa to complete the podium.
This is the second gold medal for Mauritius after they won the All Africa Games beach gold in September 2011 and they will now represent the continent in London. Kenya and Mozambique have another chance to qualify for the Olympics through the FIVB World Cup set to take place at the end of June in Tortoli, Italy.
The final was a thrilling affair, with the scores undecided after four matches, taking the match to a golden set.
The two rivals played fantastic five matches clash with Mauritius picking up the decider 15-8 to be crowned champions.
The second match was one of the longest in the history of African competitions lasting 55 minutes.
"In the first set our girls were playing our game but the Kenyan defence was very good, they were defending all the balls at the back of the court and this was a discouragement for Natasha in spiking , we lost at 21-14," Mauritius head of delegation Reza Otoola said. "In the second second set, once we were ahead of the score at 7-4, they played naturally and they have put pressure on the Kenyans and clinched the second set 21-17. We were risking getting out the final at 12-10 on tie break in favour of Kenya , but fortunately our girls came back strong, with spike and in defence to get the four points that we needed to stay alive.”
Bronze Medal Match
The Cumbi sisters led Mozambique to another chance to earn an Olympic vacancy through the FIVB World Cup after they beat South Africa 3-2 in the bronze medal match, winning the golden set 15-11
The ambitious determination started with the first match where South Africa Sekhonyana/Williams defeated opponents Chongo/Cossa in a 60-minute which ended in a tie break 20-18.
"It was a difficult game because we faced the third ranked team (South Africa), but we believed in our capabilities,” Cumbi claimed. “We decided to give our maximum because we had no pressure."
Mozambique managed to grab victory in their second match against Luyt/Strydom 21-12, 21-12.
South Africa then came back through Sekhonyana/Williams, beating the Cumbi sisters in three sets (26-28, 21-17, 15-9) in 54 minutes.
With a strong come-back Mozambique grabbed their two consecutive wins in the fourth and the golden set (21-12, 21, 12) and 15-11.