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Canadian beach volleyball duo Humana-Paredes, Wilkerson finish 2nd in debut at Chicago Open

The Canadian beach volleyball duo of Melissa Humana-Paredes and Brandie Wilkerson finished second in their professional debut at the AVP Pro Tour’s Chicago Open on Sunday.

Humana-Paredes and Wilkerson were defeated 2-1 (21-18, 17-21, 15-10) by Americans Taryn Klot and Kristen Nuss in the final. It was the second loss the Canadian duo suffered to Klot and Nuss at the event, following a 2-0 result (21-18, 21-15) on Friday. 

Last week, Humana-Paredes and Sarah Pavan, Canada’s most decorated women’s beach volleyball team, ended their partnership after five years together.

The former world champions said it’s common in their sport to part ways after a few years.

“We have a lot of respect for each other and are very proud of what we have accomplished as a team over the last five years,” the two-time Commonwealth Games champions said in a mutual statement. “As with many long-term beach volleyball partnerships, we have both decided it is time to explore new options in our athletic careers separately.”

Pavan also competed at the Chicago Open with Latvia’s Tina Graudina. The duo were eliminated by eventual winners Klot and Nuss with a 2-1 defeat after winning the first set (12-21, 21-18, 17-15).

Wilkerson and Humana-Paredes, both from Toronto, were last paired together at their hometown’s York University. Wilkerson split with fellow Canadian beach volleyball partner Heather Bansley earlier this year and has since been competing alongside Sophie Bukovec from Toronto.

Pavan, of Kitchener, Ont., and Humana-Paredes won the world title in 2019. They captured their second Commonwealth Games gold medal last month in Birmingham, England.

They’ve also reached the Beach Volleyball World Tour podium numerous times, including winning gold this year at the Jurmala Beach Pro Tour Elite 16 tournament in Latvia.

At the Tokyo Olympics, the two went undefeated in pool play without dropping a set. They were ousted in the quarter-finals with a 2-1 loss to Australians Mariafe Artacho del Solar and Taliqua Clancy. 

Humana-Paredes, Wilkerson and Pavan have yet to officially announce permanent potential new partnerships at this time. 

WATCH | Pavan, Humana-Paredes eliminated at 2022 world championship:

FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships Rome 2022 quarter-finals: Canada vs. Brazil

Watch Canada’s Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes take on Brazil’s Eduarda Santos Lisboa and Ana Patricia Silva Ramos in quarter-final action at the 2022 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships in Rome.

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