International Volleyball

“How cool is that?” Brewster-Webber make Gstaad Elite16 main

"How cool is that?" Brewster-Webber make Gstaad Elite16 main

GSTAAD, Switzerland — Belief was suspended for a moment. Two moments. Three. Tim Brewster’s hands covered his mouth. Logan Webber, glorious mullet spilling out the back of his visor, grinned a grin only a winner playing on house money — and winning big with it — could grin. Through rain falling from charcoal skies in otherwise breathtaking Switzerland, Brewster and Webber had just qualified for the main draw of the Gstaad Elite16, coming back in the third set to beat Italians Marco Viscovich and Gianluca Dal Corso, 21-18, 18-21, 15-11.

Webber and Brewster have come out of qualifiers aplenty. They’ve felt the elation of the final ball dropping, a main draw ticket punched. But there is no main draw in the world quite like the main draw of Gstaad.

Frankly, there’s nothing all that close.

“I’ve been watching this tournament since I was 14, and if there was any tournament I’d want to play on my bucket list one day, it would be Gstaad,” said Brewster, who had played in 24 previous international tournaments and lost his only Elite16 match. “So when he gave me the call to come, I couldn’t turn it down. The fact that we even got to play here and at the beginning of our first game, Logan said ‘We’re playing in Gstaad, how cool is that?’ ”

The fact that they got to play at all, much less earning three more matches on Thursday and Friday, sits at the cross-section of sheer providence and years and years of work as individuals. Both were scheduled to play later this week in AVP Denver, Brewster with Jake Dietrich, Webber with Hagen Smith. But Smith, recovering from a back injury, didn’t want to agitate it any further with an international flight and subsequent competition, and Webber still wanted to go, because, well, it’s Gstaad. While he hadn’t played with Brewster since a NORCECA in La Paz, Mexico, in 2022 — they finished fifth — he was no stranger to Brewster’s rise on the AVP Tour and his grinding on the Beach Pro Tour. So on exactly zero practices and one tournament two years ago, Webber and Brewster qualified for the first Elite16 main draws of their careers, at the most iconic location on the Beach Pro Tour.

“There isn’t a bigger tournament that could happen. This is it,” Webber said. “It’s weird to be training next to Norway and Sweden and then not only are we in the qualifier of the tournament, but we’re in it now.”

Indeed they are, in it as the bottom seed in Pool B, where they will be pitted against…

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