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2016-09-14 00:59:00 CEST

Bansley beats Pavan!

Canadian country quota clash lives up to its billing!

Brandie and Heather all smiles after their victory. Photocredit. Bernhard Horst.Brandie and Heather all smiles after their victory. Photocredit. Bernhard Horst.

It was the county quota clash we’d all been waiting for…and the game was certainly worth the wait!

Heather Bansley and Brandie Wilkerson stunned Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes with a straight sets victory to book their place in the main draw of the Swatch World Tour Finals in Toronto.

Birthday girl Bansley dominated in an awesome display of digging and diving around the Center Court as the two Canadians teams went head-to-head for the first time since the much-publicized split.

Pavan and Humana-Paredes took a small lead in the first set and then had three points to lead 1-0. However, that advantage was soon eaten away in style by Bansley and Wilkerson as they saved the set points and went on to claim the lead.

With the majority of the crowd backing Bansley and Wilkerson, the duo stormed clear in the second set with a combination of monster blocks at the net from Brandie and some sensational digs from Heather.

Bansley continued to show why she was voted the FIVB’s Best Defensive Player last year and the girls wrapped up the victory with ease with Wilkerson stealing the show with the final, winning point.

“I love those moments; I live for them!” a beaming Brandie told us. “I enjoy the pressure and I was happy that I was able to perform. No matter what we were going to fight for victory today.”

Heather digs another ball in an epic defensive performance. Photocredit: Martin Steinthaler. Heather digs another ball in an epic defensive performance. Photocredit: Martin Steinthaler.

Heather was smiling from ear to ear as the media asked what she thought of her new teammate’s performance.

“I was impressed with Brandie’s blocking and her setting was awesome,” she said. “Her setting was on point and she really hustled out there. So credit to her.

“She got a few early blocks in and winning the first set put pressure on them.”

All eyes were focused on the battle between the two former partners but Heather explained she remained focused throughout.

“Of course it was different, you’re never sure what it’s going to be like,” explained Bansley. “I had the knowledge of playing alongside her, but they had the same. When the game started it was just like any other match. That’s how we approached it. We wanted to beat them like any other team.”

Heather and Brandie’s prize for claiming victory is a place in Pool D of the main draw where they take on Italians Menegatti/Giombini and Poreč Major champions Laboureur/Sude. The Canadians’ first match is on Tuesday at 3.30pm when they take on the Italians.

You’ll be able to watch this game and the rest of the match schedule on our live stream so make sure you check it out!

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