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US medal favorites score consecutive win in beach volleyball preliminaries
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American Nicole Branagh/Elaine Youngs beat Stephanie Pohl/Okka Rau from Germany in straight sets on Monday in the Olympic beach volleyball preliminaries at Chaoyang Park in eastern Beijing.

Branagh and Youngs, who started their Olympic campaign with a victory over a Dutch pair, edged out the eighth-seeded German pair 21-17, 21-16.

"We are pretty good at the beginning of the two sets, then they served better and got better," Pohl said after the match.

The German pair finished fifth four years ago in Athens Games, while Youngs and the-then-partner Holly McPeak won the bronze medal.

(Xinhua News Agency August 11, 2008)

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