MUSCAT, AUG 10 -
Oman beach soccer team ended their campaign at the second CIS Games in fourth place. The national team suffered a 7-3 defeat against Russia in the third and fourth play-off on Wednesday. The tournament, which run for six days in Belarus during August 4 to 9, acted as a suitable preparatory event for the team ahead of their world class meet at the 2024 Fifa Beach Soccer World Cup in UAE which will take place in next February.
The coaching staff of the national beach soccer team will evaluate technically this vital external participation and will work on developing the weakness areas with more focus on enhancing the strong sides of the team. Also, capitalising on all the technical output of this tournament is another mission of the coaching staff after the friendly tournament. Oman will aim for top show in their fifth attendance after their previous presence in 2011 (Italy), 2015 (Portugal), 2019 (Paraguay) and 2021 (Russia) at the World Cups.
Oman team, led by long-serving coach Talib Hilal, managed to earn one of the direct tickets from group stage to move into the semifinals of the tournament. The team commenced their matches strongly as they thrashed Uzbekistan 13-1 in the opener on Saturday. Then, the national team suffered a 6-3 loss against Egypt in the following match on Sunday. It was the third defeat for Oman against Egypt as they went down in Arab Cup twice. In the concluding group game, Oman team players stunned world champions Russia 7-4 on Monday to book spot in the semifinals.
In the semifinals, coach Talib Hilal’s men played tough match against hosts Belarus. The latter ended the game with a 4-0 win on Tuesday. It was the third consecutive loss for Oman against Belarus as the national team met the hosts ahead of the tournament and during the camp period twice. Both matches was won by the hosts at 3-1 and 8-6. In the third and fourth play-off, Oman players received a 7-3 defeat against Russia to end the tournament in the fourth place.
The beach soccer competition at the second CIS Games in Belarus saw participation of eight nations distributed into two groups. Russia and Oman progressed from Group A while Belarus and Iran advanced from Group B. Hosts Belarus were crowned champions and claimed the gold medal while Iran team players received the silver medal and Russian players got the bronze medals.
It is expected the Oman beach soccer team players will report soon to their training sessions as the forthcoming period will feature several internal and external preparatory camps including some friendly matches. The coaching staff will work hard to shape the readiness of the players ahead of the world showpiece 2024 Fifa Beach Soccer World Cup in UAE.