Canada wins first-ever gold at Beach Worlds

    Historic gold won by Canadian beach team !!Melissa Humana-Parades and Sarah Pavan are World Champions.Photo: FIVB

    Melissa Humana-Parades and Sarah Pavan are World Champions and have booked their ticket to the Tokyo Olympics after a memorable performance in the gold medal match of the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships Hamburg 2019.

    Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes
    Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes

    Humana-Paredes (Toronto, ON) and Pavan (Kitchener, ON) beat Alix Klineman and April Ross of the United States in the final 2-0 (23-21, 23-21). The packed stadium in Hamburg delighted in the close match, and the Canadian players kept their composure for the win. The Americans settle for silver, followed by Taliqua Clancy and Mariafe Artacho Del Solar of Australia, who won the bronze medal match.

    “The last two weeks have been incredible. We have had to fight; it wasn’t an easy road at all and that’s what makes it even more special. It wasn’t pretty at times, and it wasn’t the best we’ve ever played, but we managed to stay together and fight,” said Humana-Paredes. “It was all heart and we wanted this so bad and now we have it. It’s the best feeling ever…. It’s indescribable.”

    Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes
    Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes

    The two Canadians came together in 2016 after Pavan and her former partner (Heather Bansley) finished fifth at the Rio Olympics. They are currently ranked sixth in the World (last updated on June 24).

    “It’s a dream come true for both of us,” said Pavan. “We took different paths to get here – Mel’s been dreaming the Beach Championships since she was a baby, and I had indoor dreams… It’s so surreal. This was our big goal for this season – to be World Champions.”

    This was the first medal for Canada in the history of this tournament. Humana-Paredes and Pavan finished fourth in 2017.

    Melissa Humana-Paredes
    Melissa Humana-Paredes

    Canadian final standings:
    Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes – 1st
    Heather Bansley & Brandie Wilkerson – 17th
    Sam Pedlow & Sam Schachter – 17th
    Ben Saxton & Grant O’Gorman- 17th
    Megan and Nicole McNamara – 33rd