Pairs from Egypt, Lebanon and Russia won FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour qualifying matches on Tuesday in the Qatari capital of Doha to advance to Wednesday's main draw schedule.
Second-seeded Maksim Abramov/Artur Salmanov of Russia, third-seeded Ahmed Atta/Atef Nassif of Egypt and fourth-seeded Salba Chafic/Joe El Azzi of Lebanon posted the qualifying wins to progress.
While the Atta/Nassif and Chafic/El Azzi pairings are competing in their first FIVB World Tour event together, Abramov and Salmanov have gained their first main draw berth after not qualifying for World Tour main draws in 2019 in Hungary (Budapest) and 2020 in Malaysia (Langkawi).
Also advancing to Wednesday's pool matches were top-seeded Travis Mewhirter/Adam Roberts as the Americans had a bye in Tuesday's qualifiers. Mewhirter and Roberts are competing in their second World Tour event after placing third 13 months ago at an FIVB event in the Cook Islands.
Led by Cherif Samba and Ahmed Tijan, Qatar will have four teams competing in Wednesday's pool play rounds. Cherif and Tijan play the 16th-seeded Chafic and El Azzi in their first group match with the winner meeting either eighth-seeded Alexey Gusev/Pavel Shustrov of Russia or ninth-seeded Mohamed Abicha/Anass Saber of Morocco Wednesday evening for the Pool A title.
The pool winners on Wednesday earn a bye in Thursday's first round of elimination with the second- and third-place finishers playing off for a spot in the evening's quarterfinals.
The semifinals and medal matches will be played Friday in what is the first FIVB World Tour event on the 2021 international calendar.
Doha will also host the second 2021 FIVB World Tour event from March 8-12 for the $300,000 men's and women's Katara Beach Volleyball Cup.
Read more: Doha Beach Volleyball Cup
FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour
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