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31 Oct 2012
UAE and Russia, first semifinalists!
Group B, instead, will need a heart-stopping last league-stage day to decide who goes onwards with Brazil keeping most of chances
Last breath hit bags the points for Nigeria against Switzerland
Nigeria heavily upset European Champions Switzerland in the game opening the second day in the Samsung Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup Dubai 2012. With just 11 seconds to go, Abu’s winner unbalanced a stunning match, with 15 goals, unbelievable moves, and an amusing stroke exchange, to have his team back in the race to semifinals. A wonderful comeback by the Alpine, with three goals by Stankovic, and some minutes of excellent beach soccer were not enough for Shirinzi’s team to counteract the African spirit. The Green Eagles fought, and fought and fought, and their enthusiasm got them the reward, pushing them to a more comfortable position in group B.
A really busy first leg saw the African side getting 2-0 ahead, and replying any Swiss hit to keep a safe distance in the score. After Meier’s 4-3, the Alpine poured forward looking for the equalizer, and whatever they may achieve afterwards. That was Stankovic’s moment. The left-footed bomber got his side the 4-4 and 4-5, and even hit again for the 5-6 after Ibenegbu’s equalizer.
But the Green Eagles were set to bag something big today and after Tale balanced things again with the 6-6, they managed to disarm any Swiss attempt, and keep their nets safe from then on. With the clock ticking to the final horn, Abu battled for a ball near Valentin’s box and swept it home to have his side clinching three decisive points that could end up meaning a lot for them. Switzerland, in turn, will need to beat Brazil tomorrow if they want to secure their chances to go in this Samsung Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup 2012.
Goals: 1-0: Ibenegbu, min. 11; 2-0: Tale, min. 8 (1); 2-1: Lutz, min. 5 (1); 3-1: Tale, min. 4 (1); 3-2: Spacca, min. 4 (1); 4-2: Okemmiri, min. 2 (1); 4-3: Meier, min. 10 (2); 4-4: Stankovic, min. 10 (3); 4-5: Stankovic, min. 8 (3); 5-5: Ibenegbu, min. 5 (3); 5-6: Stankovic, min. 4 (3); 6-6: Tale, min. 3 (3); 7-6: Abu, min. 0 (3)
Russia bend mighty Tiki Toa
Likhachev perfectly knew that Tahiti was not to be an easy opponent. He had no doubt about it, yet much before the kick-off whistle, and his predictions were not mistaken. The Tiki Toa turned to be a really difficult side to bring down, and had the World Champions continually staring at the countdown clock. In the end, the huge amount of power in Russian’s magazine made the difference once again, but Tahiti’s level in this Samsung Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup Dubai 2012 has been much higher than what those 0 points in their count may signal.
The Oceania champions even managed to hit first, in the very first move in the game, with Naea Bennet nodding a ball in and catching a helpless Ippolitov by surprise. But the Tiki Toa’s advantage lasted no longer than two seconds, the ones Leonov took in firing the 1-1 home from the halfway line right afterwards. The world champions wanted no more surprises, and in the following 5 minutes they kept hitting to build a smashing 3-0 run that seemed the end of the way for the Tahitians.
But Zaveroni’s side did not lose the temper and stayed calm, in front of such a Beach Soccer monster. Acknowledging that their enemy could tear their rearguard apart at any stage of the game, their main objective was to strengthen their defensive system and keep trying to do harm up front. The formula worked at the beginning, with Taiarui cutting the distance with the 4-2, but it could not get any further than that. That hit made the Europeans understand that they could not give their opponent any single centimeter, and so they did, blocking the way to Bukhlitskiy’s dominion from then on. Zaveroni’s side found it impossible to accomplish their ambitious plan, and despite trying some brilliant moves, the score did not move again, leaving them outside the semifinals of this Samsung Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup Dubai 2012 and having Russia’s berth virtually secured.
Goals: 0-1: Bennet, min. 11; 1-1: Leonov, min. 11 (1); 2-1: Shishin, min. 9 (1); 3-1: Ippolitov, min. 8 (1); 4-1: Shishin, min. 6 (1); 4-2: Taiarui, min. 10 (2)
Tight win virtually gets Brazil ticket to semifinals
Just to follow with the whole tournament’s line, the Japan-Brazil was a new terribly hard-fought battle only decided with a tight difference. Again, this difference fell on the Brazilian side, thus virtually granting the Verdeamarela the access to the next round of this Samsung Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup Dubai 2012, yet with one league stage game to be played. Japan, in turn has only one slight option left: winning Nigeria and waiting a loud triumph by the Brazilian over Switzerland.
The distance between those earmarked as the best in the world, and the rising powerhouses is getting thinner and thinner, and Japan is today capable to contest the four times FIFA World Champions until the final whistle. Indeed, the Nippon were the ones opening the score, thanks to Komaki, but Andre’s magic leveled things back just two minutes later. The stroke exchange went on, with the Brazilian sorcerer sweeping his side ahead only to find Asami’s reply for the 2-2.
Yamauchi would achieve the last advantage for the Asian kings in the beginning of the second period, but Jorginho and Mão immediately got Brazil the control of the game back. Guga’s lads were feeling more comfortable on the sand at that stage, and despite Japan was not to surrender, as they proved through a new equalizer, Anderson and Gil almost finally sealed the win for the Canarinha with the 6-4. Ruy Ramos’ lads kept trying, but their efforts were not aimed enough to counteract such a difference. Suzuki did half of the road, with the 6-5, but the Japanese efforts could not break that barrier, seeing Brazil clinch the points to have one foot into next round.
Goals: 0-1: Komaki, min. 6 (1); 1-1: André, min. 4 (1) ; 2-1 : André, min. 3 (1) ; 2-2 : Asami, min. 2 (1) ; 2-3 : Yamauchi, min. 8 (2) ; 3-3 : Jorginho, min. 7 (2) ; 4-3 : Mão, min. 7 (2); 4-4: Yamauchi, min. 4 (2); 5-4: Anderson, min. 4 (2); 6-4: Gil, min. 11 (3); 6-5: Suzuki, min. 2 (3)
The UAE make it to semifinals!
The UAE clinched a new satisfying win today in the Samsung Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup they are hosting in Dubai Festival City. As the team seems to be getting used to, it was again a really hard-worked victory in a game which had turned quite troublesome after the first stages, but the reward was absolutely worth it. These three points place the hosts amongst the best four of the tournament, thus granting them access to the semifinals of the competition.
Mendes’ side went under considerable pressure rather soon, as Nick Perera, the most prolific American today, fired the opener home for the USA. Again, the Emirati were forced to fight against their opponent, and the score, something happening even twice in that opening leg, with Abbas sending a penalty kick in for the 2-2 after Meister’s net. Little happened in the second period, but the last 12 minutes saw the UAE changing the course of things, and pushing the score to a comfortable 2-4 in just a few seconds.
That did not mean the end of the problems for the hosts, though. Things could have got far more complicated for them in the last stage of the game, as Nick Perera cut the distance and tried to begin the pursuit for the USA. Fortunately for Mendes’ side, though, Hassan Ali ended the suffering rather quickly, as within the same minute, he restored the two goal difference with the 3-5 and brought his side a much easier walk to the semifinals. With six points out of six, no one can deny the Emirati their place in the next round for the second year. Their opponent in the best-4 stage will be known tomorrow, after the last league stage.
Goals: 1-0: Perera, min. 8 (1); 1-1: Adel, min. 6 (1); 2-1: Meister, min. 2 (1); 2-2: M. Abbas, min. 1 (1); 2-3: Ali Karim, min. 6 (3); 2-4: Rashid, min. 5 (3); 3-4: Perera, min. 2 (3); 3-5: Hassan Ali, min. 2 (3)
SAMSUNG BEACH SOCCER INTERCONTINENTAL CUP DUBAI 2012
16:45 – Nigeria 7-6 Switzerland
18:00 – Russia 4-2 Tahiti
19:15 – Brazil 6-5 Japan
20:30 – USA 3-5 UAE
Matches for tomorrow
16:45 – Nigeria vs. Japan
18:00 – Tahiti vs. USA
19:15 – Switzerland vs. Brazil
20:30 – UAE vs. Russia